Author Topic: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok  (Read 1344 times)

AlphaMirage

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My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« on: 21 November 2017, 01:42:55 »
08/17/3065 17:18 Location - Tharkad City, Tharkad, Federated Commonwealth

Katherine Steiner-Davion walked out of her royal apartments, her blue and gold dress was trimmed with furs imported from the Marian Hegemony's Lothan Province, a diamond and platinum necklace dangling elegantly from her neck, resting delicately on her left wrist was a finely crafted watch, and the Archon-Princess' circlet twisted into her braided blonde hair. 

The first snow of Tharkad City's winter marked an auspicious day in the Ink District, the opening of the Seth Marsden Opera House's 200th Gala season.  She walked along the hallowed halls of the Royal Palace passing seven centuries of legacy, an entourage of AFFC officers, their escorts, and Honor Guard assigned to her protection followed her. 

A collection of cars idled quietly in the underground transport hub of the Royal Palace, she was guided to a snow-white limousine, Lieutenant-General Adam Steiner stood outside it, his dark blue dress uniform was pressed, his many medals and ribbons glimmered under the lights.

“Hello General Steiner, I'm glad that you have decided to join me this evening",

You hardly gave me a choice Archon-Princess, an order is an order.

Is that so?  Well then I order you to have fun this evening.  The Strategy and Tactics Division will still be there tomorrow... although if it isn't then that order is even more important.


An aide opened the door for both of them as they took to the streets, with so many VIPs on the move tonight the Tharkad City Polizei had their work cut out for them.  Adam sat across from Katherine in the limo's passenger compartment, "Katherine are the rumors true?"  She stopped looking outside at the waning moon and faced him, "Now which rumors would those be?  I truthfully don't know what the Tharkad Tribune has been saying about me the past few days."

"You have been spending a lot of time in the Alistair Mountains, great place to hide a secret rendezvous"

She laughed, "Oh is that what they say?  I really must spin up a new scandal if they feel its something so banal.  I never took you for a gossip Adam perhaps you really have been on Tharkad to long."

Adam looked down, he yearned to get back in the field, reform the Somerset Strikers and reclaim his home-world.  He chafed at being a Staff Officer drawing up plans and lecturing to the University of Tharkad's Military Science students while the Jade Falcons still occupied Lyran worlds especially as the expiration of the Truce of Tukayyid grew ever closer.

"I understand you are restless here but you will soon be back in the field I guarantee it.  Your work at Asgard has been very helpful.  We have never been more prepared for any eventuality that might befall the Commonwealth.   One day you will again lead the strike to liberate Somerset and it shall stay that way this time I promise you.  The Jade Falcons will be driven out of the Inner Sphere and Annihilated just like the Smoke Jaguars."

Adam looked at her, "What of the Wolves?  Phelen Ward's Wolves and the Kell Hounds shall not wait on Arc-Royal forever, Vlad will surely attack them when the Truce expires.  We should be giving them what they need to withstand that assault."

An almost imperceptible tell went across Katherine's eyes, Adam apparently hadn't noticed it though based on his non-reaction.  "If Grand Duke Morgan Kell was so upset with my ascension that he took it upon himself to secede then he can take it upon himself to succeed.  I have recognized his claim to the A.R.D.C. for now, he will have my help when he recognizes my claim to the Throne of the Federated Commonwealth and stops trying to undermine me."

Royal Guard Battlemechs stood sentry around the Ink District their bright searchlights reflected off the white snow, the skies were empty except for flurries, and the streets were watched like hawks by the Diplomatic Corps.  Free Skye is and always would be a threat and they had grown bolder since Katherine had begun cracking down on them.  TCP manned roadblocks and patrolled the district in force, whole areas were under curfew but that mattered little everyone was hosting a party tonight. 

The Archon-Princess's motorcade rolled along deserted and spotless streets as a thin layer of snow collected on the sidewalks.  They didn't even slow for the pair of Royal Guard Zeus Battlemechs who parted to let them pass before returning to their posts and blocking the street with 160 tons of Lyran steel.
« Last Edit: 21 November 2017, 10:09:12 by AlphaMirage »

Dragon Cat

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #1 on: 21 November 2017, 02:01:20 »
looks interesting

DOC_Agren

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #2 on: 21 November 2017, 19:09:08 »
1 ping only
"For the Angel of Death spread his wings on the blast, And breathed in the face of the foe as he passed:And the eyes of the sleepers waxed deadly and chill, And their hearts but once heaved, and for ever grew still!"

AlphaMirage

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #3 on: 22 November 2017, 01:47:24 »
The Seth Marsden Opera House was a majestic piece of Architecture and Engineering, it's graceful spires reached to the heavens and it's auditorium was engineered so finely that the performers didn't even need speakers to reach the back seats with their full power.  It hosted the grandest balls in the Inner Sphere outside of perhaps the Royal Palace on the other side of the city.  Nobles, Notables, and celebrities across the Federated Commonwealth shook hands and stood on the red carpet to get their pictures taken for the news.

A notable perk for many self-styled “Generals” was the chance to get an invitation to the party and this was the hottest ticket in town this year.  Katherine still tried to reward actual experience and put forward any truly exceptional individuals like Adam Steiner, Maria Esteban, and Archer Christifori for what Lyran soldiers should aspire to, but she was content with dishing out small favors to keep members of the Estates General or Privy Council on her good side and reward their loyalty.

The motorcade rolled into the underground parking structure where it would remain as long as Katherine needed them to, this was her party she could come and go as she pleased.  The Grand Ballroom was awash in colorful dresses, dark suits, and formal military uniforms from across the Commonwealth, gold, brass, and jewels shimmered under the chandeliers, drink and hor d'erves flowed freely.  Undercover Diplomatic Guards kept a close eye on the assembly ensuring that everyone remained safe and removed drunken VIPs before they embarrassed themselves or their Hostess.

The Archon-Princess stood behind a gilded door before being introduced to the gathered crowd.  The Master of Ceremonies took his sweet time, “Introducing Her Highness Katherine Morgan Steiner-Davion, Duchess of Tharkad and New Avalon, Archon-Princess of the Federated Commonwealth and her escort, Lieutenant-General Adam Steiner, Hero of Somerset and Barcelona.”  The assembled crowd bowed or curtsied before returning to the revelries, she walked down the red carpeted stairs, and her entourage dispersed into the crowd.

The pair mingled with dignitaries and high ranking officers, two women found their way into the closest orbit. Katherine greeted them, “General Steiner I would like to introduce you to the Duchess of Arcturus, Arielle Fyhne, and her daughter Lady Heather.”  Heather was flirting with the limits of the dress code for this event, her dress hugged her svelte body and its sheer panels were near scandalous.  She was every bit the fashionable socialite that the gossip mags made her out to be.  She was also about to burst over with excitement and looked toward the Archon-Princess, “Yes Lady Heather

“Your Highness, may I be so bold as to ask your escort for a dance?”, Katherine moved uncomfortably close to Adam, “You may.  I shall even let you keep him until the show starts, share him with your friends, take all the pictures you like.  He's under standing orders directly from me to have a good time.  I trust you can show him one.” Katherine put her hands on the stars on his shoulders, “and if he doesn't smile tell me and I shall take his stars for being such a grave disappointment.”  With that she gave him a nudge and General Steiner was to his horror mobbed by a flock of young Baronesses that pulled him ever further away.

Duchess Arielle watched the scene, bemused.  “Thank you for arranging this Katherine, Heather has been talking about Adam Steiner non-stop since she saw “The Heroic Somerset Strikers” as a girl.  I thought she would grow out of her infatuation but I fear she has a terminal case of lovesickness.”  Grabbing a glass of Champagne from a passing butler Katherine looked back at her, “You're welcome Arielle, you have been one of my most ardent supporters and your family has long been an ally of House Steiner.

marauder648

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #4 on: 22 November 2017, 04:46:04 »
Of to a good start!
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mikecj

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #5 on: 22 November 2017, 18:28:23 »
Poor Adam  ;D
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grimlock1

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #6 on: 23 November 2017, 00:09:37 »
Poor Adam  ;D
Eh, he's resourceful.  I'm sure he'll think of something. Either that or might have some fun, by accident.
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AlphaMirage

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #7 on: 23 November 2017, 22:06:50 »
The Archon-Princess needed a chance to catch her breath, she was spirited away to a loft located above the stage with three bodyguards and an aide. The orchestra were tuning their instruments below, the show would start soon and she would have to stay to enjoy it; to do otherwise would be a huge embarrassment even if she wanted to get away from the constant pestering of her guests.  She had known there would be to many people tonight but favors needed to be exchanged.  The list grew ever longer, but the more time she spent on the floor the more impatient with their vapid conversations she became.  Producing a pair of pills from a secret compartment in her watch she took them with a glass of water.

The Steiner Family Curse afflicted her gravely, yet another reason to hate her wretched mother who had nothing but scorn for her oldest daughter.  Katherine had spent a lot of time thinking it out but was pretty sure it had something to do with Melissa never getting to be herself.  She was always First Prince Hanse Davion's wife and the cause of the Fourth Succession War never having any legacy to call her own except her children, and that didn't turn out so well for her.  Maybe it was that she was an only child or her father dying when she was just a baby.  Maybe things could have been different if either parent hadn't passed so soon or if she had a chance to really be Archon.  Maybe it was just the constant travel and stress, the formative years of the Commonwealth were chaotic it might have caused her to snap.  The strain wore just as heavily on Katherine since her brothers were dead or missing and her sister was not very helpful.  It could also be that father was still holding a flame for his first love who died when his wife was only 3.  So many possibilities or it could be all of them, certainly her own condition was unique just as it would have been for her mother and her mother and so on. 

Either way Katherine was in charge now regardless of how many obstacles the universe threw in her face.  Fortunately the medicine had gotten better, but she wasn't sure if it was her condition or her disposition that would be the biggest liability. 

She returned to the Grand Ballroom, meeting with the Lyran Free Trade Association's President concerning the recent trade missions and pending opening of the Marian Hegemony to Commonwealth interests.  Precentor Gavin Dow was present and spoke of recent COMSTAR business, he was quite fond of the Archon-Princess, to an almost unnerving degree; yet he was Precentor Tharkad and thus she had to conduct regular business with him and required his support even if her skin crawled in his presence.  He wasn't the only one either, tragically she looked very similar to her late mother, blonde hair, blue eyes, attractive, and in charge. Though no one made overt action of it, she was unmarried and thus a potential target for some ambitious and powerful suitor... with a death wish.

She checked her watch, the show was about to begin, thus the hardest part was over.  Her guards watched from the rafters for any assassination attempt during the show.  The opera box was spacious and fully appointed with everything that would be needed, the whole floor was sealed off and the lights dimmed.  General Adam Steiner returned, his uniform disheveled and missing a few buttons, he smelled of Heather's perfume.  “Following orders I presume, General Steiner?

I suppose you could call it that.”  He sat down in his chair but didn't look particularly excited, “Why did you arrange this Katherine?  I don't like being a prize handout for your supporters. Don't I get a say in the matter.

“The Duchess has long been a supporter of House Steiner and her daughter is madly in love with you.  I simply arranged the meet, surely you can't be upset with that.  I didn't force you to take her to a side room and give her some Steiner, but if anything comes of your “orders” Arielle expects a proposal.  You are of course free to offer it of your own free will as well, otherwise I'm certain you had fun.”  Katherine peered through her opera glasses to see the young Baroness in her mother's box across the auditorium.  She was quite the sight, perhaps they might leave before the show was over to ensure the paparazzi didn't catch her in that state.

Adam, If anything were to happen to me, the Estates General strongly favor making you Archon, an arrangement that I too favor although it would sunder the Commonwealth permanently not simply my temporary succession.  Which is one of the reasons you are here on Tharkad rather than commanding a regiment staring down the Jade Falcons.  It is my duty to ensure the continued success of this realm, which will require heirs of which Steiner and Davion both have short supply.” 

That's cold of you.  Why put this all on me? I would be a terrible Archon, you have no heirs nor does your sister, your brothers are gone.  Why have you not considered anyone since Galen Cox?” 

Katherine gave him a death stare that almost made him fall out of his seat.  “Stop right there Adam.  You don't know what you're talking about, you don't think I hadn't considered it.  Who would this mystery man be, that I could wed that didn't just attract more enemies or seek to usurp my birthright?”  Her fists balled up on the armrest as she looked over the balcony at the assembling audience, “I can't be First Prince, I don't meet the prerequisites, I wish every night that father would have pushed me harder to join the AFFC but he had Victor, Peter, and Arthur and decades more life in him.  He couldn't have expected the tragic turn of events that have led us to this dilemma.  He always thought I would be better on Tharkad anyhow and the Office of Archon doesn't require military experience.” 

She relaxed slightly sitting back down in the richly upholstered chair, “Despite my ability to do the job I can never be accepted as the ruler of the Federated Suns just a regent until another comes along.  At least this way it's something I can promise to consider over members of the Estates General and March Lords until I come up with a better plan.  You see I feel like I'm married to the Federated Commonwealth and it is an abusive partnership, a prisoner to my status.  You know I have to leave for New Avalon tomorrow to face even more turmoil there trading one nest of vipers for another.

Adam regained his composure, “I am sorry Katherine, this is all out of my comfort zone.  I will of course do right by the Baroness if the time comes.  I promise I won't speak of Galen again.

AlphaMirage

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #8 on: 25 November 2017, 02:11:59 »
Katherine was drifting, the Opera (“Trauer des Schneefeuers”) was superb, a virtuoso performance for the ages, but nothing could match the circumstances of her life.  Like always, she saw everything play out again just like it was on the stage before her.

She saw herself thirteen years ago, coming back to the Palace in New Avalon after spending the day riding for the NAIS polo team... 

When she opened the door to her father's office only to see him slumped over at his desk, rushing to him, calling the doctor in hysteria, tears running down her face as Victor joined her after they had taken him away.  When Peter told her that Melissa intended to completely remove Katherine from any position of importance when the brothers completed their terms of service, to her watching the fateful broadcast where her mother was murdered by Ryan Steiner with her assistance.

There were good times to, Adam's mention of Galen brought back her highest and lowest periods.  She could relive the moment they met, Victor returning to Tharkad from the Clan front with a shiner after Galen punched him in order to save him from the Falcons.  She was just about to begin school at NAIS, so they only met briefly before she went back to New Avalon far away from the Clans but she was smitten with him.  They both went back to the Clan front while she went to New Avalon with Yvonne. 

Her and Galen's courtship continued via HPG until she showed up on Arc Royal unexpectedly, all she wanted was something to do, Melissa had sidelined her in favor of her sons.  Was she just to be Yvonne's companion her whole life?  She had worked so hard preparing, she wouldn't let that go to waste.  So she made the worst choice in her life, help Ryan Steiner kill her.

Victor was soon going to be the Archon-Prince, Katherine didn't know when or how Ryan was going to kill her mother just that it would happen and soon.  She knew that he had refused it when offered after their father died.  Morgan Kell and Hohiro Kurita were cold but did not wish to offend Victor by making to much of her unannounced arrival while he was on Arc-Royal with Omiko Kurita.  After all she was sincere in her intended purpose to meet with Galen again after a long period of correspondence.  She didn't even aspire to Archon-Prince at the time, now she certainly wouldn't have wished it on anyone.   

She and Omiko were instant enemies, there had been tension between the two of them when Jaime Wolf brought all the scions of the Great Houses to Outreach during the pause, but both women had changed dramatically since then yet were so similar.  Many times she wanted to plunge a dagger into the daughter of Theodore Kurita's long, graceful neck.  Both of them were fighting over Victor but Omi could ****** him so it wasn't a fair contest.  She knew the snake would do whatever her father commanded her and that such a close agent would be nothing but trouble in the future. 

She tried to get Victor to just step down, let Peter rise up,  avoid the problems that a Kurita-Steiner-Davion marriage would cause.  The Lyran Commonwealth and Federated Suns still had a long list of grievances with the Combine and each other, so their marriage would likely sunder it.  It didn't matter that Hanse had saved Luthien from the Jaguars and Nova Cats, they would have been perfectly content if the planet burned and Dragon was slain for good.

He refused to heed her advice but blessed the pending engagement of his sister and best friend. The two moved on to the next stage of their relationship; Galen was her first lover, their passion and love grew deeper and more intense the longer they spent together.  She felt strange about feeling so happy, tried to keep it contained, after all Melissa was killed in a bomb blast and she had to act sad about it.  The two of them went with other dignitaries to bury her remains and those of Salome Ward, collateral damage that still caused nothing but trouble.  Victor went off chasing the Red Corsair and failed to attend his mother's funeral. 

AlphaMirage

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #9 on: 26 November 2017, 11:48:48 »
INN News Service

Archon-Regent Melissa Steiner-Davion was killed this evening during a live broadcast while attending a banquet on Tharkad.  Grand Duke Morgan Kell was injured and is in critical but stable condition, his wife Duchess Salome Ward perished during the explosion.  All of the Federated Commonwealth and indeed the Inner Sphere is in mourning with her death. 

The Estates General and High Council have named Victor Steiner-Davion Archon-Prince, he will unfortunately be unable to attend his mother's funeral due to prior military commitments.  His sister Princess Katherine and Prince's Champion Galen Cox will attend the ceremony with Prince Peter. Princess Yvonne and Prince Arthur being so far away will honor their mother at a later time.  Katherine and Galen Cox will return to Arc-Royal and attend the funeral of Salome Ward.  Afterwards they will tour the Sarna March and return to New Avalon for several months before returning.


04/02/3056 07:18 Location - Cerulean Sea Resort, New Kyoto, FedCom

Katherine Steiner-Davion woke up to the sound of the tide coming in and bird song, Galen still slept beside her in the bed of their island bungalow.  She got up put on a blue robe with white floral patterns on it and took her long blonde hair out of its braids.  Their week on New Kyoto had been spectacular.  The cherry blossoms were lovely and everyone was so happy that she and Galen had decided to stop there during their tour from New Avalon to Tharkad celebrating their engagement.  The tabloids thought it was peculiar that the Princess and now former Prince's Champion were getting engaged so close to the death of Melissa Steiner.  Katherine shut that down with life is precious and you might only get one chance to be with the one you love.  That had played so well because it was true and she had never been happier.

She played with the ring that Galen had given her during the New Avalon Christmas Ball.  White and red gold twisted into each other with a ruby and sapphire, it was gorgeous; apparently Yvonne had helped him pick it out.  She had been so happy for her big sister that she couldn't contain herself, she told Katherine he had the ring because she would have exploded if it stayed inside.  Even Arthur was happy for her, Victor let his friend go as Prince's Champion but gave him the Princess' Champion honorific, which Galen never used.  Marshal Bishop Sortek took over duties as Prince's Champion allowing his cousin Ardan to retire.

Katherine heard a rustling in the other room, Galen, are you up darling? I'd like to get some breakfast, Galen Cox rounded the corner shirtless, multiple scars of his time in the LCAF fighting Jade Falcons and Dragons wound intricate and brutal patterns into his toned chest.  He leaned over kissing his future bride to be and tickling her cheeks with the silly beard he was trying to grow since he was no longer bound by AFFC regulations before whispering, We could just get room service again love, Kat shivered, I'll never get a tan if you keep inside all the time, Tharkad's summer even on Tatyana just won't do it, You'd look beautiful either way Kat, Kat returned his kiss with more, Room service sounds like a good idea Galen

Later

A knock on the door caught Katherine's attention, Galen was in the shower so she went to answer the door.  Hauptmann Isadora Agravine was on the other side wearing her AFFC uniform, Katherine a massive earthquake has hit Solaris City, the planetary authority has called for assistance from all systems within one jump.

Oh no! That's terrible Isadora!  I will speak with Daimyo Endo right away, Can you contact the garrison commander and the (FCS) Prime Modulus?

Katherine picked up the phone and used her encryption card to get a direct line to the Daimyo.  Galen got out of the bathroom to see her speaking of the logistics involved to get a Buccaneer merchantman and her Monarch drop-ship loaded with supplies.  She even volunteered her entourage to assist in whatever manner her people needed.

INN News Service

Princess Katherine, her fiancee Galen Cox, and volunteers from New Kyoto have arrived via a pirate point in the Solaris system to assist in the ongoing rescue and recovery efforts.  The Dove-class MCHS Temperance and Mule-class FWLT Arrivaderchi have also arrived but via the Zenith point and are en route to assist the overburdened Solaris First Responders.

Footage of Galen Cox's Crusader with a high visibility stripe using its hands to clear rubble for the Silesia Feuerwehr (Firefighter) in the Xolara slums, another one of him eating with the Black Hills Bobbies after a long day of work

Picture of Princess Katherine Steiner-Davion holding a baby in the NICU of Unity Hospital, another one of her distributing food in Kobe to victims of the earthquake, and visiting Montenegro first responders at an aid station


Several Days later

Solaris 7 News Service

An explosion has rocked the Allegro Hotel in Solaris City's International Zone, firefighters are responding and evacuating the building.  Cause and Casualties are unknown at this time.

04/17/3056 19:18 Location - Unity Hospital, Solaris City, Solaris VII

Princess Katherine just stood there, time slowed down, she watched the monitor and could see the smoke just a few blocks down.  Her hands closed over her mouth whimpering, no, no, he was here just a few minutes ago, maybe he didn't make it there yet

Her main bodyguard Krauser reacted immediately, drawing his pistol and grabbed the Princess' arm.  All points collapse on the principal, we are evacuating She meekly allowed herself to be surrounded by Diplomatic Guard as they rushed her to a waiting car and then to a safe-house.

INN News Service

Firefighters have extinguished the Allegro Hotel fire, tragically Galen Cox and five other citizens perished in what appears to be a natural gas leak.  Fire Marshals are investigating the explosion but right now there is no evidence of foul play.  Princess Katherine Steiner-Davion is safe but has been moved to a safe-house and will no longer make public appearances until the investigation has been concluded.  Her brother Archon-Prince Victor Steiner-Davion extends his condolences to his sister and will privately mourn the loss of his friend.  He has sent Prince Peter to bring Katherine to Tharkad and asks that all of your prayers and well wishes be sent to the families of the fallen.

04/20/3056 Location - LIC Safehouse, Greyland

Hauptmann Isadora Agravine looked helplessly at her friend, Katherine had gone catatonic after crying her eyes out for a whole day and had refused to eat or talk for three days now.  All she did was play with her engagement ring. 

Isadora pleaded Katherine! Katrina! Morgan! please say something, anything.  Everyone in the Commonwealth is sad about Galen you're not alone, but Ivona and I are really concerned, please snap out of it, all she could do was give her a hug once and a while and make sure she didn't do something she would regret.  She tried everything stories about their time together at Tessaraburg Women's Academy, Her experience at Sanglamore, stories that Katherine had told her about NAIS, her family, and youth on New Avalon.  Nothing worked, she was really concerned that her friend was gone for good.

So Cold, Katherine muttered, Isadora looked at her, What did you say?, Kat muttered again So Cold, Isa grabbed some blankets from the closet and put her friend under them.  Hang in there Katherine, your brother is coming in a few days.

The Next Day

Katherine had slowly begun to come out of her depression spiral, Hauptmann Isadora Agravine, Countess Ivona Reba, and her were gathered around the small table talking while lunch was being prepared.  With LIC, MIIO, and S7 investigators out trying to find out who was responsible for the Allegro bombing there was little else to do.  The lunch looked very tempting but there was a problem, a sole glass of wine was put in front of Katherine, What is this!?  I didn't order wine, take it back now! or I will break it and remove your eyeball with the jagged stem!  Isadora and Ivona were shocked they had both seen Katherine angry before considering they had spent much of their adult lives in her friend circle but even this was something else.

The remainder of the lunch was uneventful and the women retired to the living room, the TV was of course off, no one wanted to watch the news.  Aftershocks still caused the ground to tremble but they had to wait for a more secure arrangement rather than trust the retinue that had come with them. 

Later on tea and cakes were served, Katherine drank a small portion of it, the tea tasted strange so she put it down, Is there anything strange about your tea Ivona?, No it tastes normal, within minutes she knew something was wrong.  Ivona looked concerned, Katherine you don't look well, Increasingly concerned I don't feel well either get Krauser right away, then the convulsions started.

04/22/3056 Location - Dove-class MCHS Temperance

Patient Chart
Name - Morgan Elizabeth White    Age - 24   Sex - Female    Blood Type - A+_

Dr. Serafina Bhola was making her rounds, the Canopian Hospital Ship was packed with injured but fortunately most of them were being quickly discharged as the Commonwealth and Free Worlds League were getting their acts together.  She certainly hadn't expected to go to Solaris during her cruise through the Steward Confederation but the Magistracy's best press came from these sorts of missions, although the Inner Sphere welcomed pleasure circuses just as eagerly.  Those girls are going to make a killing once they get here... all those hunky firefighters with their overtime pay, Dr. Bhola sighed, maybe later.

She got around to her most recent patient, she almost didn't make it, poor girl, at least her vitals had stabilized.  Dr. Bhola reached down and pushed her blonde hair off her face.  Ms White, please wake up, no response.  Too bad, there were a lot of other patients and she needed to check her and make sure there were no residual effects from the poison; and it was better to get these things out quickly.  Dr. Bhola grabbed the young woman's shoulder and pushed her, she snapped awake immediately and looked terrified.  Ms White, I am Dr. Bhola, you are aboard the Temperance Hospital Ship, someone poisoned you.  You're better now but I have bad news.

The young woman's eyes took in everything around her, Where are my friends?  What bad news?  Poison?, Dr. Bhola looked at the woman's chart, I need to check you to make sure there is no lingering effect, please calm down for a little while longer. The Magistracy Medical Corps doctor treated the young woman unaware that it was actually Princess Katherine Steiner-Davion's alias.  Her vitals cleared, Well there don't appear to be any lingering effects that won't heal shortly, but now for the bad news Ms White, please sit down

Katherine sat on the bed as Dr Bhola sat down in a rolling chair facing her, Ms White, we couldn't save your baby, the poison killed him, and it also damaged your ovaries, no technology I know of in the Inner Sphere can reverse the damage.

NO! NO! It was all I had left of him, just another week and he would have known!, Katherine was crying her eyes out and overcome with grief and rage, Now its all gone! its not right! its not right! why me!, she grabbed and clawed at Dr. Bhola, Orderly!  A large man rushed to help the Canopian doctor, he stabbed a syrette of quick acting sedative into the madwoman who swooned and was guided back into her hospital bed.  Dr. Bhola checked herself and found everything in proper order, Poor girl, I'll make a note to keep her sedated until someone comes to pick her up.

04/23/3056 03:47

Prince-Kommandant Peter Steiner-Davion arrived aboard the Canopian vessel with a company of the 1st Royal Guards outside.  He was escorted to his sister, she had told the doctors to not mention the baby or full extent of her injuries to anyone, Katherine, I'm so sorry about Galen and so happy you're still alive.  Victor wants me to bring you to Tharkad.

I'm not going to Tharkad Peter, take me to Gallery., he was confused, But why?, she remained adamant, Just do it or you'll have to drag me there kicking and screaming. She was wringing her hands, I'm not ready to go back to Tharkad yet.  I might never be.

INN News Report

Archon-Prince Victor Steiner-Davion continues to contend with an increasingly restive Skye Province, he has extended subsidies to it's inhabitants but sentiment continues to build against him as more rumors circulate that he was responsible for the death of his mother, Melissa Steiner-Davion, last year.  Unverified reports also claim he might have been involved in the bombing that killed Galen Cox and the attempted murder of his sister Katherine on Solaris VII.  Spokesmen for the Princess vociferously deny this and promised legal action for the slanderous accusations, but her current location remains unknown.  Kommandant Peter Steiner-Davion has returned to duty in the theater and is attempting to bring a civil end to the growing unrest.

05/18/3056 Location – Blacktree Estate, New Stockholm, Gallery, FedCom

Katherine stood alone in the cool, damp, concrete underground rail terminal and pulled her dark blue wool coat closer.  Three weeks and it still felt so fresh, she just needed to be alone for a while to get herself back together.  Dowager Duchess Nondi Steiner walked through the utilitarian doorway with a pair of black suited porters to take her grandniece's luggage, the larger woman embraced her, I'm so sorry Katrina

Aunt Nondi, I don't know what to do now.  Everything I ever wanted was just torn away from me in a week.  I just need some time away from all this.

It will be fine dear, you can stay as long as you like.

The world of Gallery was a dismal place, the orange dwarf sun lacked the power to break through the constant rain clouds.  Like everything in the Lyran Commonwealth the Blacktree Estate on this planet had been built to last and it had for generations, it was mostly underground but there were surface structures that interrupted the large forest of Blacktrees (a genetically engineered Oak that can survive on the meager sunlight and rocky soils of Gallery).  Katherine Steiner-Davion stayed in the same rooms that her namesake Katherine Steiner the women who founded a dynasty, and Katrina Steiner her grandmother who did the same had, the crushing weight of history was just as powerful as the mass of stone and metal that surrounded her.

While she recovered she watched as the Skye Province burned, Peter and Victor were out of their league.  Ryan Steiner, the treacherous Duke of Porrimo, protege of the deposed Alessandro Steiner, and head of the Skye Rebellion was surely the one that had tried to kill her.  He was either afraid and trying to save his own skin or a fool to think that his little rebellion would be enough to unseat Victor, who was on the clock to find their mother's killer as the one year anniversary came up.  If Ryan had succeeded there was no doubt that something would leak exposing the conspiracy to kill Melissa Steiner-Davion had been solely her idea. 

She had spent long hours at her Grandmother's grave begging her forgiveness, if she hadn't been so foolish there might have been a chance of reconciliation, in time either Mother or Daughter might have seen their errors, even though she hated her mother so much for so long maybe it could have happened.  She even considered going to her brother, confessing it all and throwing herself on his mercy for killing their mother, it had cost her everything already surely he couldn't do worse.

Finding all those options wanting however Katherine devised a plan to eliminate all their problems.  She arranged a series of HPG messages, calling up everything she could on Ryan, searched her Grandmother Katrina's diaries and sources she had spent a long time courting for references to the man.  Long nights were spent investigating and pulling up the accounts that she had laundered money through to finance his rebellion and the payment to the Dancing Joker, the man who had killed her mother on Ryan's orders.  She had everything she needed so she added in some cutouts, flung C-bills across the universe to the Federation Outback before bringing them back to Skye, collating it and neatly packing them up to leak to her brother.
« Last Edit: 26 November 2017, 11:54:51 by AlphaMirage »

mikecj

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #10 on: 26 November 2017, 15:27:38 »
Interesting depth to Katherine.
There are no fish in my pond.
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DOC_Agren

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #11 on: 26 November 2017, 17:36:16 »
Interesting depth to Katherine.
I have to agree, I almost could like this Katherine 8)
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AlphaMirage

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #12 on: 26 November 2017, 19:03:33 »
Thanks, I just love the FCCW era, so many fleshed out characters and moving parts that still affect the world even in the Republic Era.  I feel they gave Katherine the short end of the stick with flat motivations. She had so much potential.

croaker

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #13 on: 27 November 2017, 18:50:28 »
Definitely interesting. I'll be watching this one.

AlphaMirage

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #14 on: 28 November 2017, 01:08:01 »
08/22/3038 Castle Davion, New Avalon, FedCom

First Prince Hanse Davion kneeled in the Grand Hall of Castle Davion facing a small blonde girl in tears.  Why do I have to go away daddy?  Is it because I made Peter cry?  I'm really, really, really sorry. 
No that's not it Kiddy Kat, this isn't a punishment.
But I don't want to go, I want to stay here, with you.
I know you do but your mother and I can't give you what you need here at Castle Davion right now.  You will make new friends, have fun adventures, and learn a lot at Sister Jocelyn's.
But why can't I be Katherine there?
You can make Morgan anyone you want her to be.  If people knew you were daddy's little princess they would treat you differently, you want people to like you for who you are, not what you are. 
Can I make Morgan, Queen of the Universe?


Hanse laughed and put his hand on the girl's shoulder, I wouldn't wish that on you Katherine, I don't think you can handle that right now. 
But Victor is going to be King of the Universe
Victor isn't going to be King of the Universe, but he will have a lot of responsibilities and he would be smart to find good helpers, you would help him wouldn't you?

Katherine sheepishly looked away and moved her foot idly, Of course, he is my brother even if I never see him
 
I know this is difficult for all of you, being apart.  If I could change it I would, my brother and I were inseparable when were lads.  He was my best friend, Hanse got a little misty eyed remembering the good times before his brother's unfortunate death in combat and his tone got a little choked, I really hope that you and your brothers and sisters will eventually be just as close.  We will go and see him and your Grandmother on Tharkad in the summer when school is on break.  I will write you regularly and if you need anything go and talk to Sister Jocelyn, she knows who you really are. I love you Katherine, you will do great things some day

Still unhappy but satisfied Hanse gave his daughter a kiss on the head before sending her off to a waiting car, blowing a kiss to her as she was driven away to the airport.

12/17/3048 Royal Ballroom, Triad, Tharkad

Cadet Victor Steiner-Davion was the man of the hour, ambitious men and women circled him speaking with praise of his parents and eager to hear his thoughts and stories.  A similar collection surrounded a young and pretty women who always seemed on the other side of the room from him, he caught glimpses through breaks in the rank and was curious.  Few people tried to evade the Future Archon-Prince of the Federated Commonwealth, eventually he excused himself and managed to shake some stragglers.  In the corridors surrounding the ballroom he caught a glimpse of golden hair and blue dress, it was the woman who had been avoiding him, overcome with interest he sought her out and quite accidentally cornered her in one of the antechambers. 

She looked mildly panicked, Yes Prince Victor? Relax young lady, may I know your name?  Katherine It was only the third most common name on Tharkad and consistently in the top ten for the whole Lyran Commonwealth portion of the Federated Commonwealth, thinking nothing of it he continued.  May I ask you for a dance, Katherine?  She produced a small fan from a pocket in her dress, I don't think that would be appropriate  Victor looked confused how could anyone turn down that invitation, Why not? 

She let out a long exhale and put the fan handle under her chin, framing her face Because I'm your sister  Victor's cheeks went red with embarrassment, You're that Katherine! but you look different, and you weren't on the guest list

Well it has been four years since we last saw each other face to face and I haven't used my real name in public for years.

Minutes later

Isadora Agrivane chatted with a Nagelring cadet, they had really hit it off but she still was wondering what happened to her friend.  She had been gone quite some time.  Cadet Erik Schneider noticed that Victor hadn't been around recently either and made a comment to the fact.  Isa seized upon that, Maybe they are with each other.  If Morgan scored herself the Archon-Prince I am going to be so jealous.  A small group of “Morgan” and Victor's friends decided to find out in true teen fashion by walking in on the supposed lovebirds.  The Ballroom had an intricate series of corridors and small chambers surrounding it, many of which were occupied by love struck couples.  Eager and foolish the small group peeked into each room to shrieks, giggles, and yells, sometimes items were thrown.  In due time they came upon Victor and “Morgan” chatting in a brightly lit room much to their immediate disappointment.  “Morgan” seemed concerned but Victor was unworried, Do you mind?  I'm having a conversation with my sister.  Their peers jaw's dropped and they made haste, of course Prince Victor, we apologize for the interruption.

12/18/3048 Tesseraburg Women's Academy Fencing Room 2

Katherine and Isadora were fully armored with plate and mail over a padded arming coat, their helmets down and longswords up.  The Commonwealth school of fencing was much like an LCAF military formation, heavy, cautious, and focused on endurance.  It took a lot of training to avoid hurting yourself when an assault mech fell over after taking a heavy volley of fire and you were expected to get back up to keep fighting.  Dueling scars waxed and waned in vogue but were a common badge of honor among the warrior-aristocrats.  The two opponents took in the other's measure before beginning their bout, Katherine laid into her partner but recognized that she was holding back.  After a few moments she was certain something was different and called a pause, angrily removing and throwing down her helm and banging her gauntlet on the breastplate.  YOU'RE NOT EVEN TRYING!  COME AT ME WOMAN! Isadora lowered her sword and lifted the helmet's face-piece, I can't do that.  Katherine was incensed and stomped the ground, WHY NOT!
I don't want to hurt you
Since when!? Two days ago we had a hell of a match, I still can feel the bruises, Come at me!
I can't do that Katherine
Teufel noch mal!  Isadora, and this is why father insisted most of us use aliases, I'm sorry I lied to you but I've been living as Morgan White for most of my life.  It shouldn't change anything, you already have your slot in Sanglamore, you are best fencer here, how will I get better if you hold back?
Her friend still seemed reluctant but pulled her face-plate back down and got into a ready stance, Katherine retrieved her helmet happy that at least this wouldn't be a wasted morning.


Archon Ascendant

INN News Report

Ryan Steiner was killed today on Solaris VII while visiting the ongoing reconstruction efforts, he was apparently shot but no formal press release has been issued.  His aide and person of interest Sven Newmark has disappeared, the LIC and MIIO are offering rewards for any information that leads to his location. 

The Free Skye Movement continues to lose ground after their disastrous defeat on Glengarry at the hands of the Grey Death Legion.  The Fourth and Tenth Skye Rangers have been disbanded for participating in the invasion and their commanders have been imprisoned pending action by the Advocate General.  Low key violence continues unabated as security forces from the Federated Suns attempt to quell the uprising.

Archon-Prince Victor Steiner-Davion had announced that he will rule from New Avalon this year and that his sister Katherine will serve as regent on Tharkad.  Prince Peter's location remains unknown since the events on Lyons, a cause of much consternation in the Skye Province.


Katherine's package clearly worked as intended, while it wouldn't bring back Galen or her baby she felt immensely satisfied once she heard that not only had Ryan Steiner been killed but the Dancing Joker was in the wind. 

It didn't make her feel good though, despite her Aunt's insistence that her older brother was a fool she knew he was just in over his head.  He was never good in the Court, any problem that couldn't be solved with his Battlemech he had little natural appetite for, he should have just stepped down and married Omi leaving Peter and Katherine in charge here and Bishop Sortek, Arthur, and Yvonne in charge of the Federated Suns. 

With Ryan Steiner out of the way things began to stabilize in Skye but she still didn't have a great plan for what would happen next, her own plans having been ruined.  So she continued the ongoing plans of her mother and grandmother, while devising a new way to deal with the looming Clan threat.

INN News Report

Princess Katherine Steiner's popularity continues to increase throughout the Lyran Theater of the Federated Commonwealth.  The Skye province has returned to normal, the fires of rebellion having been quelled by an increased humanitarian and Lyran police presence.  Free Skye cells are rapidly being rounded up by authorities and their assets seized.  Refit kits and new equipment are being rushed to the clan front to hold the line and rebuild the shattered AFFC.

Katherine had prepared her whole life for the role of Archon and now she had it, but there were a lot of things she hadn't anticipated on dealing with, like the looming Clan threat.  They would need to be dealt with, the Com Guards had brought them time but the Jade Falcons and Wolves would not wait forever, the only thing that held them back was their own sense of honor not the Armed Forces. She racked her mind to come up with a way to deal with them, they were a threat so alien and so human at the same time.

The Wolf's Dragoons had come clean about their clan ties several years ago, she was there on Outreach with the other Successor Lords and their Heirs.  Colonel Jamie Wolf would be able to enlighten her on more specific workings so she started up a correspondence with the man asking him various questions not covered in the materials he had presented then or later.  She poured over everything needing to lay the preparations for when she needed to pull the trigger.

Either way she needed to project enough confidence that the Lyran people would be fine so she started learning from the Bodians, the LIC's elite training cadre.  The Lyran Intelligence Corps was far more loyal to her than Victor so it was a natural fit.  They felt like they would be sidelined under the soon to be intelligence secretariat Tancred Sandoval and multiple directors were fully in Katherine's court.   

Katherine restarted Battlemech training in secret, having been okay at it as a teenager but unwilling to continue.  It was unfortunate that she needed to cut her long beautiful blonde hair to fit in a neurohelmet, her vanity finally having to yield to practicality on at least this front.  She still refused to join the AFFC, not wanting to be seen as a soldier like Victor.  He could have all the glory in combat, she certainly didn't want to be known as the leader that allowed the Clans to destroy the most powerful nation in the Inner Sphere, she was destined for more than that. 

That required a Battlemech, the ultimate war machine.  She owned four, her grandmother's storied Warhammer, still in 10th Lyran Guards colors, her late Fiancee Galen Cox's Crusader still bearing a worn blue paint-job with an orange stripe from Solaris, a new white Griffin which she named “Stiletto”, and a battered but functional Wasp.  Every day when she had completed the training exercises she would find herself in either the Warhammer or Crusader, they were all she had left of the people who once piloted them. 

As weird as it sounded she would hop into the cockpit and just talk and ask questions to their former owners, it was completely preposterous and she could only imagine what her brother would think if he knew.  Would he think it an idle fancy, a start of madness, a woman who speaks to soulless weapons of war, or did he do the same with Father's Battlemaster?  At least Galen's Crusader had been doing good work before he was killed, not the good work of killing bad people, but saving people in need from the cold uncaring world around them.

09/18/3057

INN News Report

The tragic death of Joshua Marik on New Avalon has apparently been covered up by Archon-Prince Victor Steiner-Davion who replaced the young man with a double.  Chancellor Sun-Tzu Liao and Captain-General Thomas Marik have launched a retribution campaign against their former worlds in the Federated Commonwealth's Sarna March.  Victor's sister Princess Katherine has been ratified as Archon by an emergency meeting of the Estates General and as Archon she has activated the Emergency War Powers clause of the FedCom Accords to secede the Lyran Theater from the Federated Commonwealth.  The now renamed Lyran Alliance has ordering an immediate withdrawal of the traditionally Lyran units from the Sarna March back to the pre fourth succession war borders.

Now Archon Katherine Steiner(-Davion) exited the Estates General after delivering her acceptance speech and activating the FedCom's Emergency War Powers clause, the FWLM and CCAF were intent on reclaiming some of the worlds that her Father had “liberated” from them during the Fourth Succession War.  Most of those worlds were useless and nothing but a money pit, needless distractions and potentially far more dangerous to attempt to defend. 

Those Lyran Garrisons were needed on the Clan Front and her fool brother would try and start a Fifth Succession War for some worthless rocks.  She had to make the hard choice, if she seceded then Thomas Marik would have no reason to stop shipping the refit kits to her own forces.  “Grand” Duke Morgan Kell immediately formed his own little fiefdom on the Clan Border in protest.  The New Avalon Ambassador informed her that her brother demanded an immediate audience from Castle Davion half the universe away.

The Archon walked into the bowels of the Triad alone, it was a cavernous maze of concrete and stone capable of surviving a bombardment from orbit if necessary.  She knew where she needed to go and saw a pair of battle armored Royal Guardsmen standing vigil over the door she needed.  They opened the room and saluted as she walked past into a spartan room. 

The Holotank was an engineering marvel, her parents despite their issues with COMSTAR in the past had spent lavishly to bulk out the HPGs connecting the Federated Suns and Lyran Commonwealth so much that near real-time holography between Tharkad and New Avalon was very expensive but possible.  There were only three things in the room, a dais, camera rig, and projector, she walked up to the dais, a computer generated male voice emanated from it, “Authorization needed”, she placed her hand over the scanner, Archon Katherine Steiner, authorize

Confirmed, 10 seconds to virtualization

Katherine was a little giddy, not only was she in charge now for real but it was not everyday you got to sling a hologram of yourself halfway across the universe tying up a dozen HPGs at the same time.  She wondered how many c-bills that costed.  Having been a princess even an incognito one forever she hadn't actually paid for many things, there was always somebody for that. She saw long term economic trends, producer prices, and production levels not the microeconomics of the common man.  Somewhere she made a note to actually buy something with real Kroner one day just to see what it felt like. 

The lights around her dimmed until she stood in a shaft of light coming from the ceiling casting dark shadows over her otherwise light features.  Her brother Victor's hologram appeared, it was obviously virtual but looked nearly lifelike and very angry.

Hello Brother

Katherine what are you doing?  I trusted you to lead the Lyran state while I was on New Avalon, now you abandon all of the Sarna March


Now she was angry, I trusted you to treat me as an equal partner in this.  Why didn't you just tell Thomas Marik or me that Joshua died?  The NAIS can't save them all and it's not like the League would turn down Kroner or Pounds for a death by natural causes.  Your bumbling attempt to cover up his death with one of father's convoluted plans threatens a Fifth Succession War while we still have the clan threat to deal with.  I can't support that so I'm suspending the FedCom Accords, we will be separate but equal.
 
Our parents would be turning in their graves in they learned you have decided to embark on such a bold power grab.  I demand that you repatriate the Federated Suns Theater forces and their jumpships immediately, I will defend the Sarna March myself if I must.

You will have them returned in due time but not before you can't do that, you will have to find some other war to fight.

Victor disconnected, Katherine felt immensely satisfied to say that to his face.  She was born to rule the Lyran State, this was the culmination of all her life's struggles and little victories, validation beyond measure.  Now she just needed to make herself a legend worthy of her bloodline, Victor would be a flash in the pan, just another warrior prince lost to the meat grinder of history, her name would be etched into its very bedrock. 

The problem of the clans still remained but she had a plan to deal with them and now was the best time.
« Last Edit: 28 November 2017, 01:12:00 by AlphaMirage »

David CGB

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #15 on: 28 November 2017, 01:08:37 »
great story
would like to see more please
Federated Suns fan forever, Ghost Bear Fan since 1992, and as a Ghost Bear David Bekker star captain (in an Alt TL Loremaster)

AlphaMirage

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #16 on: 28 November 2017, 01:20:10 »
great story
would like to see more please

https://battletech-mercs-unleashed.obsidianportal.com/, the original especially if you like MIM

DOC_Agren

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #17 on: 28 November 2017, 22:36:51 »
Is this the end, or just a stopping point?
"For the Angel of Death spread his wings on the blast, And breathed in the face of the foe as he passed:And the eyes of the sleepers waxed deadly and chill, And their hearts but once heaved, and for ever grew still!"

AlphaMirage

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #18 on: 28 November 2017, 23:27:59 »
Stopping point, I have nearly 60 pages in Word just to the First Whitting Conference not even catching up to part 1 or moving beyond it.  I don't just want to just dump the feed.

AlphaMirage

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #19 on: 30 November 2017, 01:03:14 »
10/19/3057 Tharkan Media Associates Production Complex, Tropicana City, Tharkad

The Tharkan Media Associates Complex was built in a tropical paradise, one of the only places on Tharkad that was sunny and warm all the time.  Warm but not terribly hot which was perfect, the white sand beaches and palm trees were a stark contrast to the grim industrial zones, sprawling cities, and Boreal forests that made up most of the the surface of the Lyran Capital.  The Jormungand Cruiser TWNS Crusher was in port, a rare treat for Tropicana City and an extra six hundred sailors were roaming around looking to spend their back pay.

Archon Katherine Steiner(-Davion) was traveling incognito, she suddenly had a need for a body double so she put out a public casting call for actresses with blond hair, blue eyes, taller than average height, natural “features”, and in their mid to late 20s for a Katherine Steiner(-Marsden) bio pic.  The legendary original Katherine was her own inspiration having a shrewd mind, good heart, and suffering much of the same tragedy that had befallen her of late.  It still hurt that she wouldn't be able to put her own son in a tiny military uniform and pledge peace in our time before The Estates General, he would have been nearing his second birthday by now and she could never forget that.

Katherine was dressed like many of the other actresses working on various programs in this extensive production complex.  Fashionably large sunglasses, a light seafoam sun dress, designer heels and purse, the purse was new and felt awkward as she had never carried one before.  In her hands was a very fancy coffee she brought with actual Kroner which was a special thrill and a glossy fashion magazine with a sketch pad in between it's pages. 

She always thought being an actress or model would have been a fun career, far less stressful than being the leader of an interstellar nation.  Unlike the rest of her family she had range, she could be the tragic heroine, damsel in distress, iron-fisted stateswoman, dynamic CEO, and warrior princess in the same day. Who knew pretending to be another woman for twelve years would give her plenty of options for presenting herself.  She did everything with theatrical style, her staff made sure she always looked her best, and even the way she moved was carefully scripted based on the audience.

Tharkad was a media planet just as much as it was a Capital, a pity Victor never got that presentation and image was just as important if not more so to these people as actual competency.  She swore that someone had to check Victor's clothes before he went out in public.  She wondering if perhaps that is why he likes being in the military so much, uniforms.  Though he still would probably show up in his cooling vest, shorts, and muddy combat boots instead of his formal uniform to a Gala if it said Military Dress.  So embarrassing and utterly hopeless.

She walked into one of the many nondescript buildings only identified by their number and which one of the themed streets they were on.  While it was tempting to simply walk around and see how well her disguise would hold up she was unfortunately going to be the first one called so that would have to wait for another slow day.  Inside she checked in and was escorted to the waiting room for “Working Title:  Katherine the Great”, there was actually a script in the works funded by one of the Archon's many discretionary accounts and the LIC Office of Propaganda (through Alliance Pictures Group).  However she needed someone to take a more method approach and sculpt the narrative a little bit so that's why she was here.

The waiting room was an almost comedic sight, it looked more like a sorority cheerleader meet with how many blondes were in the room.  Several of the women looked at her as she entered clearly envious, after all she was a dead ringer for the description.  A few of them actually walked out in protest not so subtly brushing against her on their way out, completely unaware as to who she actually was.  One of them stared very intently at her but quickly returned to her own business as Katherine opened up the fashion magazine and began sketching.  She waited there for nearly fifteen minutes before the clerk called “Morgan White” into the sound stage.

Behind the scenes she walked right through into the production office, now safely behind a one way mirror she took a seat across from her main bodyguard Krauser, who was dressed in a gray tank top and camouflaged pants which showed off his large build and bulging muscles.  He looked like every action movie actor ever but an actual gun was in the holster, not loaded with blanks, and he did his own stunts. 

“I see you are truly in the spirit of cinema today Krauser” 
He flexed, surprisingly jovial compared to his normal dour self, “Dah, surprisingly hard to stay under cover if I keep breaking sleeves with these hammers.  Several agents gave me their cards”
, Krauser had a bemused look that she hadn't seen before, “some actresses too, for a job, and...other things.” 
Katherine feigned concern, “I trust you didn't take them up on the offer yet, it would be a shame to lose you”
“Nah, maybe good retirement job, either that or I go into politics”

Katherine laughed, “Trust me, stick with movies, politics is more trouble than its worth”
“Whatever you say Archon”


Inside the office LIC operatives had a series of sophisticated cameras and sensors that would match the candidates for poise and various other metrics trying to make it far more likely the candidate would pass for their charge.  One of the Propaganda Officers would serve as the producer and put the candidates through a series of tests to gauge their fitness for the task.  Hauptmann Isadora Agrivane would be the final judge.  She had known Katherine for nearly ten years and was the only person who could figure out if it was her or an impostor and she was going on the mission anyway, of course she didn't know that yet. 

A long series of actresses were paraded through the room, they were forced to walk a series of lines, do some facial expressions, repeat dialogue in different tones, and do some improvisation with an actor.  Some were pretty close and the poor fits were weeded out, Katherine was idly sketching during the initial screening, after all the LIC officers were professionals this is literally what she paid them to do.  Down to the final three candidates they called a lunch break and told the women to return in two hours giving them a very nice voucher for the cafeteria and a check as a prize for making it to the final screening. 

Now came her discretionary time, she came up with a series of more difficult challenges and tore apart their CVs, this was after all a matter of national security and she could afford to be picky.  There were plenty of people who wanted to be her, here was a chance for one lucky woman to do it. 

She needed another group of actors, some stunt people, and choreographers for the next phase.  Her double needed to function well under pressure and do what Krauser told her to do when he told her to do it and there was little time before her window of opportunity disappeared.  The location was moved to a proper sound stage recently used in an action movie and she was in the production office with the others monitoring things via video.  The professionals worked up a quick simple scene, added some pyrotechnics, and swapped Krauser's real gun for a fake one.  The actresses returned and were greeted with costuming, changing into more formal attire, an odd second round but they rolled with it, they had seen and done stranger things for a part. 

One by one each woman was greeted by Krauser and another man (always a different one) who put on a rather tame screen test for a ballroom scene that turned into a potentially life-threatening event to see how they reacted.  One just balled up and cried, frozen even as stunt people fired their weapons around her before they called a halt.  Another ran as quick as she could to get away, almost falling into a trap door only saved because Krauser was faster.  The third actually did what she was told to do and her CV was solid, she was a Baroness from Kaumberg, private school education, here studying at the Tharkad Classical Arts Conservatory, a fencer, dancer, singer, musician, and more importantly she was new to the planet.  The other two women were dismissed but they were allowed to keep the dress, Katherine wouldn't be caught dead in the same formal gown twice and she needed some extra wardrobe space. It was an amusing benefit that she provided for baronesses trying to better their station.  The Archon was quite willing to give away her old clothes to fangirls, not everyone was as fortunate as her. 

Lady Loralei Voight was surprised to see the Archon walk out of the production booth clearly she hadn't expect this to be the part of a lifetime.  Katherine noticed that it was the same woman that paid special attention to her in the waiting room and got closer standing across from her.  A strange parody since she was in street clothes while the other woman was in one of her older ballgowns.  She looked to both sides and Loralei mirrored her equally interested, they adjusted their hair and did a series of other innocuous girly gestures. 

“Lady Voight, Are you sure you are not my long lost twin sister hidden from me by Melissa and Katrina for all these years?”

“I am afraid not Archon, I am one hundred percent Voight, but it is uncanny.  There's no movie is there?”

“Oh no the movie is real, but it will be an extended production.  I need you to play me for several months before actual filming begins.”

“You want me to play you!?  That sounds very difficult but I'm honored.”


12/20/3057 The Triad, Tharkad

Archon Katherine Steiner stood around a circular table in one of the many secure LAAF briefing rooms in the War Ministry.  The General of Armies Nondi Steiner, her Political Adviser Mandrinn Tormano Liao, and the new Director of the Lyran Intelligence Corps General Alicia Savinson were the only other attendees.  “I am about to undertake a covert mission to bring about an end to Clan Jade Falcon, I can't tell you all the details because you might try to talk me out of it but I'm going to try.  All you need to know is I will be gone for some period of time and you need to make it seem like I'm still here.  My body double will make public appearances and I've already recorded tapes of myself explaining the policies I want you to implement for the press.  General Savinson's people already have that portion of the act under control.  All you need to do is follow my instructions while I am gone, my group will have a Black Box so we can communicate.”

Tormano Liao was properly curious after all she had only been Archon for months but now decided to leave, “Where are you going Katrina?”  “I am going toward the Rasalhague Republic to make contact with someone who might be able to deal with the clans that threaten the Lyran Alliance.”  Nondi cut in, “and what if you don't return?”, It was a valid question that she had strongly considered, this mission was high risk she could end up dead or worse, “If you don't get anything from us in six months, tell everyone I'm sorry I wasn't good enough and help my brother, god knows he needs it.”

Her mad plan was to make contact with Clan Ghost Bear and attempt to make a deal with it's Khan that would eliminate or weaken Clan Jade Falcon and Clan Wolf.  The LIC's sources indicated that they were increasingly searching out opportunities in the Inner Sphere in a very un-clan like way sending merchants first instead of warriors so it was her best chance.  She took with her a K-4 Black Box Fax Machine and an LIC team capable of operating it as well as a group of Loki Black Ops and her longtime and trusted friend Hauptmann Agrivane.  The Scout Jump-ship LIC Traume der Nacht and Leopard drop-ship LIC One-Eye Raven left after the Christmas Ball of 3057.  Their destination Alshain, the capital of the Ghost Bear OZ deep beyond Rasalhauge space.

For seven weeks she spared with Isadora and the Bodians, trained in the simulator for her Griffin and Isa's Falconer.  She would only have one chance to deal with the clans and either she would die, become a prisoner, or impress them enough that they might be willing to negotiate.  The forty people attached to this mission were hand-picked by the Director who still thought she was crazy but probably wouldn't die.

Feb 11 Nadir Jump Point, Nox, Wolf OZ

The Traume der Nacht had just unfurled it's jump-sail to begin recharging when the Sovetskii Soyuz Class Warship Dire Wolf, the Wolf Clan's Flagship, arrived at the same point several thousand kilometers distant.  It's captain noticed the small, low profile jump-ship on scanners and began burning for them.  Katherine was terrified, she was so close to her objective, they had escaped under the Radar thus far but now they were found out and helpless to resist.

The massive Warship stopped nearby, a man's voice came over the open radio channel, “I am Khan Vladimir Ward of Clan Wolf, identify yourselves or be destroyed

“This is Archon Katherine Steiner-Davion of the Lyran Alliance, Enemy of Falcons and Wolves.  Do you intend to give us a chance to earn our freedom or are you an honorless brute?”

“Steiner-Davion, as in Victor Steiner-Davion, the man whom the Jade Falcons sought to kill, and Archon as in the Khan of the Lyrans?”

“Yes, he is my Brother and I am the Khan of the Lyran Alliance”

“Very well, I issue a Trial of Possession for you Katherine, how will you defend?”


Katherine was stunned and a little flattered but mostly terrified and she needed a response quickly, “I will defend myself alone in a sword fight against you Khan Ward, unless you think you cannot beat me in melee.  If I win I want SafCon out of Wolf Space and you.

You would dare to challenge a Clan Khan to a duel?  I am descended from a long line of Warriors that shall one day rule the Inner Sphere...

Katherine interrupted what might have been a long and gratuitous monologue, “Me too, Khan Ward, now I believe you must volunteer the venue for this duel

“You have been paying attention after all, the duel will take place aboard the Dire Wolf in twelve hours.  Well Bargained and Done

Khan Ward disconnected and Katherine almost fainted, her heart and mind were racing.  How could she hope to stand alone against a Trueborn Clan Warrior?  This was dumb and she might get killed in the process so far away from home and no one would know what happened, she wouldn't even be remembered.

Aboard the Dire Wolf

Khan Vladimir Ward and Loremaster Katya Kerensky both stood in the CIC surrounded by the technicians that actually operated the Warship.  Katya cut in after the transmission ended, “You should just take the foolish girl if you want her so much, send some Elementals.  Why did you accept such a bumbling Batchall?

You think I cannot beat some Freeborn, I have slain two Khans in the past months, resurrected Clan Wolf on their bones, and still had the strength to raid Smoke Jaguar for ilKhan Leo Showers' giftake.  This freeborn had the courage to challenge me I should accept it.  Perhaps she is a worthwhile Warrior, if not I will have slain a weak leader so that a stronger one might rise up and be a challenge to us when we decide to renew the offensive.” 

AlphaMirage

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #20 on: 01 December 2017, 01:16:02 »
*Duel aboard the Dire Wolf*

Katherine and Loki Special Agent Roderic were in a teeny, tiny KR-61 Drop-shuttle approaching the massive Sovetskii Soyuz Warship Dire Wolf.  It was nearly twice the size of the Monolith the largest civilian jump-ship in use in the Inner Sphere and its size was awe inspiring.  Katherine thanked Heaven that most of the Clans had chosen not to use Warships during their Invasion.  This is what it much have felt like to be an enemy of the Terran Hegemony and its legendary fleets.  The KR-61received docking clearance and matched velocities with the vessel.  It landed on its struts in a hanger bay and everyone inside waited anxiously for the green light that marked the return of normal pressure.

Five Wolf Elementals from the Wolfkin Keshik and a blonde woman with a steel gray uniform entered the docking bay.  Archon Katherine and her companions walked off their dropshuttle's ramp, her blonde hair in a bun wearing a white blouse, dark blue pants, black leather bodice and boots, onto the Wolf's Flagship and up to her.  Having read much about Clan culture Katherine showed no fear and locked eyes with the Wolf woman as she closed the gap.  She introduced herself as the Clan Loremaster Katya Kerensky, and ordered the Lyrans to follow her to the dueling location.  As the four Lyrans walked through the bowels of the ship they watched as Technician and Laborer caste parted for them and entered one of the ship's gravity decks where there were many gathered Warriors to see her duel against their Khan.

Katherine entered the Circle of Equals with Roderic and saw the Wolf Khan, he was wearing a thick leather belt that protected his guts and steel grey shorts with red stripes down them but nothing else.  She was drawn to the many scars the Wolf Khan bore all over his body including a prominent one down one side of his face.  He would have been handsome if not for the damage done but Katherine momentarily thought about jumping into his arms and seeing where it would go.  She remained calm though she noticed that he was closely studying her as well.  “Welcome to the Circle of Equals Katherine, I see you have brought your own weapons, that is good, I am eager for a challenge”

Roderic laid out the collection of swords, Katherine chose a longsword, Vlad a saber and the two set up opposite one another in the circle as Roderic departed with the weapons.  Vlad tested the balance of the weapon and seemed comfortable with it, last minute doubts ate at Katherine this was a dumb plan but she was too far into it now to back down.  Worse things would happen if she ran, she had to trust in her own skill to win against this opponent.  The two neared and tested their reach before the trial started.

Katherine feinted and struck keeping safe to gauge the ability of her opponent.  He was not aggressive at first and didn’t fall for the feints, dodging and blocked strikes. She had anticipated he would hold back, he wanted her alive for some likely sinister purpose and she had no need to spare him.  Quickly she started attacking more, keeping him on guard and he began reaching out trying to find a weak point in her defenses.  One of her attacks drew blood, a glancing blow on his off-arm and he looked satisfied and began hammering at her defenses with efficient ferocity. 

The two began to trade more blows, Vlad cut at her blouse with his saber and blood flowed over her pale skin just as much as his scarred hide.  The two were equally matched, she was unable to get a kill shot and he was unwilling to take one preferring to just draw blood and wait it out until she tired.  Katherine's breath came in gasps but Vlad had no such struggle he had been bred and trained to be a Warrior and he was the Alpha having already slain two Khans, Kat had only begun taking her training seriously.

As the fight became more lopsided Katherine made a crucial mistake, she over-reached on an attack, Vlad seized her main arm with his off-hand and broke her grip on the weapon which he hit down with his saber.  Following up with a knee to her abdomen, the sword and her fell to the floor, Vlad dropped his own sword and kicked both outside the Circle.  “I haven't had a challenge like this since sibko, Get up and keep fighting Katherine or you will die”

Katherine was winded and hurt, this was all just some sick game for him, these Clanners are twisted.  She slowly rose taking time to catch her breath and turned to face him, hand to hand was not her strength even with a year and a half of Bodian training.  Vlad stood there seemingly happy that she was still in the fight, they both squared up to one another.  Katherine started off safe again and got punched and kicked viciously for her timidity, she started working in some more advanced techniques and started to do some damage but he was still so far ahead of her in every way.  She attempted to put him in various locks but he was too strong and eventually she ended up in a submission hold.  She had no more strength to fight and yielded, tired and afraid.

“Well fought Katherine but now you belong to Clan Wolf”

The Next Day

Katherine woke up in her small room on the Dire Wolf, she thought it was “yesterday” that she had fought the Khan and her body ached from the beating she endured.  After her fight she was treated by the MedTechs and allowed to clean up before being escorted to this room where she passed out.  Attempting to exit the bed she was almost tripped by a duffel marked with the Wolf crest, it contained a paper copy of their Remembrance, red tank tops, gray cargo pants, and other clothes, beside it were a new pair of gray combat boots all in her size.  She used the head and grabbed a water bottle draining its contents, her stomach ached and she had no idea how long she had been out having forgotten what time it was when she entered the room. 

Looking down at her right wrist she saw and felt the bond-cord given to her by the Khan, its red and gold strands and their rough texture reminded her that she was no longer The Archon of the Lyran Alliance, a Princess of the Federated Suns, she was now just a prisoner of Clan Wolf.

Changing into what apparently was her new uniform and lacing up the boots she proceeded to open the Remembrance not wishing to offend her captors by attempting to leave this room without permission.  Apparently it was an epic poem on par with the legendary Greek ones that formed the historical context of Clan Wolf though this one had been edited and reprinted recently since Vlad took over, no doubt adding several stanzas lionizing his prowess.  She wondered how much of it was true or just pretty words plastered over generations of ugliness.

As she started reading the door to her room opened and revealed Loremaster Katya Kerensky who was dressed in a uniform like her with a wicked looking whip on her hip.  Katherine got up immediately and spent a little bit too much time eyeing the weapon afraid of what was to come.  “Katherine, the Khan has tasked me with your training until we reach Tamar in fifteen days.  Clearly I have done something to displease him but we both must follow his orders, keep up or you will be punished.  If you prove yourself a Warrior you and your unit, who are unharmed, will be freed.  Failure will result in your death or assignment to a Labor camp in the home worlds.  Do you understand?”

Katherine confirmed and followed the woman to the mess deck, she had ten minutes to eat the bland food before training started.  She and a small group of Wolf freeborn attended lectures, conducted PT on the Grav Deck Katherine kept up but still felt the excruciating lash of the Medusa whip when she fell behind the pack, then more lectures, sparring, simulator training, then dinner, then more lectures.  Every night she passed out and got back up to do it all over again, she had never worked so hard in her life and dreaded what she would face on Tamar.

The only “rest” she got was on the dropship journey from Tamar, the Dire Wolf arrived at their capital world and she was aboard the Command Dropship Lair with Katya and Vlad.  Unfortunately that left her directly under Katya, a strict taskmaster, fierce warrior, and absolute bitch but a grudging respect began to grow between them as Katherine lived up to her challenges.  Vlad sat in on some of the training sessions and seemed impressed with his Bondswoman thus far.  Either that or he just liked the two women trying to kill each other.

Tamar War College 2/27/58

The Tamar War College like many regional training centers was located near as diverse a geography as possible, open fields of cover crops faded into mountains, hilly deciduous forests surrounded the training facility and an open plain was defrosting as winter faded.  She knew a lot about this facility considering her late fiancée Galen Cox had attended here, she had already commissioned a statue to commemorate him once this world was liberated from Clan Wolf.  Her heart would always belong to him and his loss still pained her.

Katherine stood in the parade grounds, a medium weight jacket covered her and the many candidates assembled here as a cold wind blew from the mountains.  They were split into groups of 24 with a single Trueborn Wolf Warrior as their main trainer.  These wolves were grizzled veterans of the Clan Invasion, Tukayyid, and the Refusal War that had survived despite their Khan attempting to kill them.  All were beyond joining the ranks of the Bloodnamed but not old enough to be forcibly retired into Solahma units and most hated their position.  Each had a Medusa Whip at their hip and were not afraid to use it whenever one of their “pups” displeased them or faltered lest weak Warriors fail the Clan at a crucial moment.

The training at Tamar was far more complex than it was on the Dire Wolf but even with a two week advantage and nearly a year of achieving the best shape she had ever been in it still was incredibly difficult.  PT in the morning, breakfast, simulator training, live mech exercises in Wasp IICs, small unit tactics, obstacle courses, live firearms and blade training, dinner, lectures/indoctrination, sparring within the group, then rest.  It pushed her to the edge of madness and she embraced it, no longer willing to expend the effort to hold back her baser instincts lest she die or fail which was just dying slower and condemning her friend to a similar fate.  Without her medicine she started reverting to a more primal version of herself which terrified her but scared her trainer more.  So much so that he became fearful that she would turn the gun or knife on him.

As the six weeks continued one she became tougher, stronger, and more ruthless, four fellow cadets fell to her hands after they attempted to kill her and improve their own chances.  After she endured basic training there were two more Trials she needed to overcome, the first was un-augmented combat, she would be given an opponent and then would have to engage the victor of the other dual, four in one out,  death was not necessary just victory.  The second would be an actual live fire Trial of Position where she and a fellow cadet would go against three of their peers facing opponents gradually increasing in tonnage and skill.

Prior to the first Trial she was given a light day to prepare and heal up, she spent it walking the grounds of the War College and surrounding forest.  She wasn't nervous anymore which scared her, you should be nervous before being in a cage match.  The next morning she ate and was escorted to the Arena which was built into the Tamar War College's Gymnasium, it was a welded steel cage and she entered with three other cadets and heard the lock behind her.

Her first opponent was a Wolf with Elemental Ancestry he outweighed her by 20Kg and had 12cm more reach.  He hit hard but she had grown tougher since her first fight with the Khan eight weeks ago.    She pushed in on his guard and hammered him with blows while taking quite a few of her own.  Eventually he charged her and slammed her into the steel floor with a crash.  The man had made a mistake though, she was good on the ground and killed him with a guillotine choke relishing the moment she heard his death rattle.  She freed herself from the now dead man and stood back up ready for the next challenge.

The second opponent was a young Tamar women, thus a former Lyran citizen, she looked dreadful having spent many years under Clan occupation she was feral and gaunt.  Katherine looked much the same and both women were covered in blood from their prior bout.  Both took a moment to catch their breaths before engaging. They pummeled one another viciously, she was quick, tough, and younger than Katherine but didn't have the advantage of being trained by some of the best black ops commandos in the Inner Sphere.  Nevertheless she was a survivor, you would need to be to live under Clan occupation, and gave as good as she got.  Katherine finished the woman off with an axe kick to the neck, bone snapped and she left the cage a winner. 

Laborers removed the corpses and MedTechs treated the survivors, her trial now complete Katherine returned to the bleachers and watched the carnage.  Four more fighters entered to do it all again, the Laborers had to wash the blood off the floor three times that day to keep it functional.  She had completed the first Trial but there was still the second one, tomorrow, that would decide whether it was all worth it.

The next day Katherine was the first Trial scheduled, she chose a Pouncer D for this trial its 6 ER Medium Lasers and 12 Streak SRMs paired with a targeting computer and jump jets fit her personal style the best.  She followed the Trialmaster in his Timber Wolf to the War College's Proving Grounds, it had fallen into disarray after Clan Wolf claimed the planet, her mech trampled young Quillar (a genetically engineered crop that is a mix of Hemp and Maize) plants that Wolf Laborers had planted in the spring.

Her first opponent was a Kit Fox B, it’s the fearsome autocannon gave it tremendous firepower for such a mobile platform.  Her Pouncer’s jump jets threw her Omnimech into young trees and small sections of forest as 105mm Autocannon rounds tore through them leaving gaping holes in the canopy.  Her mech was more mobile and within two minutes the Kit Fox had fallen under her firepower. Heat streamed off Katherine's mech as she waited for her fellow cadet to engage in his trial, steam rising off the radiator ports.  Given a short break she checked the status of her Omnimech, three heavy hits but scattered.  Her diagnostics were good and she was ready for the next match, she was already in as a Warrior but wanted to see how far she could go.

The fellow cadet in a Viperwas bested by a Shadow Cat, a disappointing loss but he had almost prevailed only stymied after a gauss slug tore into his Mech’s knees.  Katherine was given her next opponent by the Trialmaster, an Ice Ferret Prime, the swift and mobile Omnimech would outpace her in open terrain but a spring rain had closed in over the trial grounds and she noticed a portion of the field was already boggy.  Katherine hit her throttle and watched as her opponent still gained on her but she shifted with her jump jets herding the enemy into the muddy terrain or forced him to turn and lessen the distance that separated them.  Sporadic laser fire vaporized rain drops and man-made lighting cut across the air between the two mechs vaporizing ferro-fibrous armor plates where it impacted.  The mud bogged down the swift mech and her Pouncer's weapons cut through its left leg, the medium Omnimech tilted over and crashed into the mud. Defeated it powered down.

Her final opponent was a Hellbringer, the powerful omnimech that had been one of the first encountered from Clan Jade Falcon. Galen Cox had given the mech the designation “Loki”, his terrifying encounter was one of the first war stories he had told her even before they started dating and she felt that fear now.  Her mech was heavily damaged, it didn't have the armor left to stand much longer so she would have to be creative if she wanted to best it.  The Pouncer kept mostly to cover firing long shots but trying to find an opening to bring it's firepower to bear.  Her jump jets allowed her to close and hide from its devastating firepower.  She wore its weak armor down but one of the Hellbringer's Streak SRMs found her own ammo bin and blew the side of her Pouncer apart, the neural feedback cascaded into her mind and caused her to black out.  Her mech fell and she was recovered by the Elementals attached to the Trialmasters' Timber Wolf and taken back to the War College for treatment.

The next day Khan Vlad Ward cut all three strands of her bondcord and gave her the Star Commander patch at Graduation.  Out of the 600 initial cadets, 187 hadn't made it past basic (death or failure did not matter), 67 died after that, of the remainder only 57 became Warriors and 3 of those were Star Commanders.  Clan Wolf still had much work to do but they had around a cluster of new Warriors, the next class would start in two weeks but since this was the first they were the ones that had the greatest chance of success.  Those that had made it past the first trial or still had promise might be recycled back in but most of the failures were just that.  The numbers would only get worse which suited the Wolves just fine, rigorous selection would make the Touman strong.

AlphaMirage

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #21 on: 02 December 2017, 00:33:00 »
03/17/3058

Katherine’s first night as a free woman she spent in the Khan’s bedchambers, finally giving in to her baser drives with him.  A real attraction had developed between the two of them and it made Vladimir Ward, a staunch traditionalist, uncomfortable but that just resulted in more intensity than the otherwise libertine bonding experience “coupling” was in the clans. 

In between the lovemaking sessions they talked and she found that Khanslayer Vlad the Beakbreaker and Green Eyed Monster had hidden depths that surprised her.  He was still a blood-soaked warlord but was genuinely trying to bring about a new Star League led by the Clans.  There was just disagreement on how to do that to that end Vlad had learned Russian and read Alexander Kerensky’s and his son Nicholas’ journals to try and understand what their real drive.  He adopted some of Alexander’s other interests.  Since the Great Father was not at first a military man but a political science major at the University of Tharkad interested in the arts Vlad had taken up poetry to try and connect to what he saw in the man many centuries dead.  He was dreadful at it but Katherine was genuinely impressed at his attempts. 

Ever since the clans had been exposed to the Inner Sphere especially the Invading Ones began to have doubts and start taking on characteristics of their occupied people.  Even the most traditionalist Crusader had to admit that the Star League would not arise by force of arms alone especially since they had been stymied by the Freeborn Stravag Spheroids.  Each clan had their own idea on how to achieve it but they were all too fractious and warlike to work together without a strong common foe.  Despite the former ilKhan Ulric Kerensky’s attempts to kill him Vlad was inspired by the man’s leadership ability even if he thought it was the wrong path.  If the clans were not a means to bring about the Star League what were they?

The next morning Vlad gave her a red leather jacket as a gift which was a touching but unusual gesture.  Nevertheless Katherine had to admit it looked good on her and it was nice to have a pretty thing that was unique after wearing a uniform for two months.  She was given her Codex, in the form of a steel bracelet with a raised Wolf’s head on it, which marked her as a Wolf Warrior and allowed her to freely move about occupied Tamar City.  While she would love to be free of the stress of running the Lyran Alliance she had to return before anyone noticed her deception.

As a Star Commander she needed a post and sought out Katya, who accepted her as a Wolf Watch Officer with the future left somewhat open-ended.  Katya would establish an HPG link to Tharkad from Tamar and this would add another back channel to the Inner Sphere other than Ranna Kerensky, Star Colonel and consort to Khan Kell of the Wolves-in-Exile.  Kerensky as a Warden was interesting in checking Khan Ward’s more warlike impulses though she was impressed with his pride and prowess.  Watch Commander Katherine took a light rail from the Governor’s Palace, Wolf Clan HQ, to Tamar’s spaceport where the Leopard dropship LIC One-Eyed Raven was impounded.

Upon arriving at the Spaceport she took a utility transport onto the Tarmac and the Wolf Patrol guards assigned to the vessel parted to allow her entry.  She immediately rushed to her room and undressed, jagged lines ran along her fine features, she would have to dress more conservatively or people would ask questions.  Even the Canopian beauty industry wouldn’t be able to make them all disappear in a short period of time.  Even if they succeeded the emotional and mental scars would remain.  She had fought and killed people for the privilege of fighting and killing more people, she felt sick and vomited into her quarters’ private toilet. 

Upon cleaning up she looked at her reflection in the mirror, she still had cuts and bruises along her face but all she could see was the dead eyes of that young women in the cage.  She couldn’t have been older than her own little sister, Yvonne, yet she had murdered her.  “This isn’t me, I’m not a murderer.”  Freed of its constraints for her survival and still suffering from the neural feedback she had received the previous day her broken mind finally snapped.

But of course you are, you killed your own mother without remorse, Galen and his son are dead because of you.  Vlad loves this side of you because it is the real you, he has broken down all the little lies you tell yourself and freed your true nature.  An Alpha Female, a White Wolf red with blood, that’s what gets him off and you love it. Don’t try to hold yourself back just accept who you are like you did in that cage.  You savored that moment and walked out proudly after murdering two people.  Before this too your fight with Vlad, every cut delivered felt just as good as every thrust last night.

Katherine’s anguish was clear on her face, she hadn’t experienced a break this intense since Solaris.  Desperate to bring it under control she opened the medicine cabinet and pulled out a pill bottle, the small white tablets shaking inside their plastic container.  She placed three of them into her hand and held them.

Katherine/Katrina is just a weak pretender maybe that is why Mother wanted to replace her with her lesser brothers.  She just gives and gives, a tragic heroine married to the state, destined to never be happy.  Even Victor hates you, Omi turned him against you and they are going to try and kill you.  She needs to die if you want your brother back, and you do. 

Deep down you want him more than anyone else even Galen, your lover boy Cox was just a great consolation prize because Victor had eyes for another but if she’s gone, you might have a chance. Why did he leave you?  Both of you were supposed to rule together as King and Queen of the Universe just like you dreamed. You were so close, he might never have known it was you that night at the ball but it felt wrongYou had him but couldn’t do it and ruined it for yourself just like you always have, because you hate yourself for wanting it so bad.

Morgan is just a scared little girl calling for her daddy, desperate to make friends.  You can’t cling to her, Daddy’s dead.  What if they just like her because they found out she is a princess?  You can’t let go because the happiest years of your life belong to a woman that doesn’t exist.  It is all just pretend, no matter how much you try to charm them they still hate you because you are fake. 

Krazy Kat is the real you and the sooner you admit it the better off you will be.  Why should you care what they think if they will never accept you?

All the stress and pain from the past two months had worn down her defenses against the one enemy she feared the most, herself.  Katherine looked down at the three tablets in her hand, all it did was buy time.  She had to keep her condition to a low burn or she would turn out like another “Mad Marge” Olsen wrapped up in a cell on Gallery, whispering to the darkness after losing a civil war.  Would they give me the old woman’s cell? 

What if Peter is already there? She didn’t want to be lonely maybe he snapped before she did, he was always wound tight.  Would anyone visit their poor sister who thought she was so great before she lost her mind? 

Why go back?  If this was just about the Falcons she could fight them as a Wolf, just run away and die in glorious battle.  What was she trying to prove?  No, she wouldn't run.  She had castigated Victor for running away. 

She took the pills and washed them down with a water bottle before taking a long shower to gather herself and dress her wounds.  She could keep it under control, she had to, because Krazy Kat was right.

Katherine's clothes were too big now, she couldn't recommend the training regime to anyone though even if she looked great if you liked feral lean killers.  She cinched them tighter and put the red leather jacket back on, it was a gift and Vlad would be offended if she didn't like it.  Now she needed to get back to the rest of the unit, Katya had given her the address and told them they were expecting her.  What did they think happened over the past two months?

She departed the Leopard dropship and ordered the Wolf Patrol transport her to the rest of her unit and have a bus on standby to take them back, they would be leaving immediately.  While initially hesitant to listen to her he followed orders and made the appropriate arrangements with the Starport Factor and drove her to the hotel in a gray Wolf Patrol car.

Driving through Tamar City was depressing, the city had already been going through tough times before the Clan Invasion.  One of the original colonies of the Lyran Commonwealth it was much like Arcturus, mines had been played out, fertility in people and soil had fallen, factories had closed down or been destroyed during five hundred years of war with the Draconis Combine.  People just left and never came back, seeking better opportunities elsewhere.  As Archon and before that as a Princess everywhere she went they put on their best appearance.  Here she saw what it was really like it was humbling experience and she endeavored to do better if it was possible.

She arrived at the Starflight Hotel, it had once been a solid four star hotel used by traveling merchants doing business with House Kelswa now it hosted Wolf Merchants and their dropship crews while their vessels were awaiting cargoes.  At least her unit wasn't lonely, no doubt the Loki agents had gathered quite a bit of information from the travelers.  Katherine ordered the Patrol officer to remain on site in case she needed to go somewhere else and he grudgingly complied, upset to be doing a Laborer's job.  Opening the hotel lobby's double doors she was happy to see that her friend Isadora was there waiting for her.  The woman rushed her friend and embraced her, “Katherine!  I'm sorry happy you're alive!”, she looked closely at the barely concealed bruises and cuts on her face, “What did they do to you?

That's not important Isa, I'm fine.  I managed to come to an agreement with the Wolf's Khan.  We can go home tonight.”, Isadora was furious and poked her firmly in the chest, “It's not important!  You were gone for eight weeks! and you come back to tell us that you have an agreement with the Khan with all these injuries. And it's not important!  Dammit Kat I want answers! I have been worried every day that the Wolves would turn on us or I'd hear my friend died.” 

Isadora's angry voice caught the attention of the rest of the Loki operatives that were waiting in the hotel lobby but they waited.  “Isa, I had to do some things for the Khan to accept me; some things that I'm not proud of, but the other option was worse.” 

Katherine started crying, “I'm so sorry to have put you through this, so very sorry.  I don't think I'll ever be able to make it up to you but I'm willing to try.  Please forgive me, I shouldn't have pulled you into this.” 

I don't want to tell you what happened, please don't make me.  I'm so happy that you are all unhurt I couldn't live with myself if I hurt anyone else.  Can we just please go?

Katherine and Isadora stood apart from each other for a tense moment, before Isa turned and stomped off likely to her room.  The Archon joined Special Agent Roderic and the other Loki operatives, “Archon, we have an immediate situation, it is timely that you are now free because the Falcons have attacked Coventry.  General Steiner and Mandrinn Liao are dealing with the situation and we haven't informed them of your status whatever it was we are glad you are returned to us.  We have passed some intel to Asgard that we overheard about current events here but nothing substantial.

Archon Katherine was terribly concerned, “The Falcons have attacked Coventry!  How did they rebuild so quickly and get past our Clan Front Forces.

Archon, when Phelen Kell returned to Arc-Royal with three Galaxies of Wolves General Steiner deployed the quick response forces that might have opposed them.  We weren't sure whether or not his Wolves would make a move on Tharkad with the Kell Hounds.

Verdammt!  Inform Asgard that I will be returning to Tharkad via Pandora in sixteen days and need a command circuit in position by then.  Until then gather two task forces to deal with them and if you have to drain Galatea of mercenaries do it, but do not let Coventry fall.  Pack everything up and get to the One-Eyed Raven, we leave tonight.  I have to go for a few hours but will meet you back at the dropship.

Watch Commander Katherine returned to the Wolf Patrol vehicle and left for the Governor’s Palace, this unwelcome news might yet to prove fortuitous for her Wolves.  She ascended it's grand staircase past the Wolf Patrol guards and the new and imposing Gnome battle suits acquired from Clan Hell's Horses.  Rapidly finding Katya she informed her of the recent events by the Jade Falcons.  She then spoke with Vlad and shared a touching moment with him before departing, still feeling strange with this unusual relationship. 
« Last Edit: 02 December 2017, 00:41:40 by AlphaMirage »

AlphaMirage

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #22 on: 03 December 2017, 22:20:17 »
04/18/3058 Location – Asgard, Tharkad

Archon Katherine Steiner entered the situation room in a 1st Royal Guards uniform without insignia, she was after all nominally in it. General Nondi Steiner had come out of retirement to become her General of Armies until she found a more long term appointment.  She walked up to her and Mandrinn Liao at the head of the holo-table surrounded by the Top Brass of the LAAF.

“I would like a situation report General Steiner.”

“It is good to have you back Katrina. Here is current situation, the 14th Donegal and 11th Arcturan Guards are leading two paired task forces to cut the Falcons off from their Occupation Zone.  Mandrinn Liao has retained the 71st Light Horse, two Regiments of Dragoons, and Waco's Rangers with their Crazy Eights to reinforce the garrison or defend Tharkad should the Falcons come here.”

“General Savinson, what are the odds the Falcons will strike here?”

“Poor, Archon while we have imposed a media blackout in the afflicted area our sources on-planet have reported that the Falcon's primary objective is Coventry.  They have six clusters and we still receive sporadic reports that the garrison and academy cadre harry the Falcons.  The Khan hasn't made any other moves beside clearing the corridor for their logistics.”

“Will three regiments be enough to hold the Falcons on Coventry until the 14th and 11th can get into position?”

“Current estimates have a 70% confidence interval that a one time reinforcement should give Generals Steiner and Esteban a chance to completely cut off the Falcons.  They have been slowed by a lack of Jump-ships to move their RCTs.”


Katherine quietly cursed herself, if she hadn't given those Jumpers back to her brother they would already be there. She wouldn't be stuck in a war of attrition which even with the Falcon's Touman in a damaged state would still look bad and cause a lot of damage.  By the FedCom accords she didn't have to give them back, if they were in the Alliance they were under General Steiner's command.  Victor wouldn't have been able to sell that to the March Lords though and no doubt the whole Davion Brigade of Guards would be dropping on Tharkad by now if she hadn't returned them.  She knew the Waco Rangers hated the Dragoons, there is no way the two commands would work together well despite their elite skill.

Katherine looked over the holomap, it was showing the current force map of the Falcons, she pointed to a world near the edge.  “70%, I don't really like those odds.  Mandrinn Liao would Waco's Ranger be able to launch diversionary raids in the Falcon OZ around the Blair Atholl?  There is almost a full command circuit to speed them back there, I just used it.  They can be at the Falcon's borders in a a little more than a week.”

Colonel Wayne Waco was brought up on the long range and after some haggling that gave him a lot of Falcon salvage he accepted the terms.  He would raid the Blair Atholl and worlds near the attack corridor.  That would also give Khan Ward a chance to take advantage of the Falcons when he got the next round of War Materiel to reinforce the Touman from the Homeworlds.

“If Khan Pryde thinks we can attack her back lines in force, she might have to pull at least one cluster back to deal with the threat.  They can't keep fighting if they can't resupply their forces.  That should give us a chance to do some damage and force her to act on the defensive.”

The War Council finished up other situation reports with the recently arrived Archon their current high level duties completed she was dismissed for the day, her Realm was in good hands.  Before leaving she took a look at the holo-map, the circled Task Forces were inching their way across light years of void.  She hoped they would get there in time. Every day Khan Pryde spent on Coventry was another she could spend destroying Coventry Metal Works and increased the chance that something would leak which might be worse.

04/22/3058 Location – Archon's Office, The Triad, Tharkad

Archon Katherine was busy managing the various crises that afflicted the Lyran Alliance, it was becoming increasingly difficult to keep up the media blackout about the Falcons on Coventry.  She was going to have to go public about it soon and face whatever credibility crisis arose from that issue.  The Mercenary Relief Force had arrived and was beginning operations against the Falcons. Waco's Rangers had begun to attack the Provisional Garrison Clusters that were left behind when Khan Pryde engaged in this bold attack.  The twin Task Forces remained slow, several jump-ships had suffered technical problems and they needed to find alternate transport while it was being repaired.  Problems always arose when you tried to move things the size of RCTs on a dime across hundreds of light years.  It's not like she could rent more jump-ships or dragoon civilian ones, questions would be asked.

The phone on her desk rang, she grabbed the elegantly crafted device, “Archon, your brother is demanding an immediate audience via HPG concerning Coventry”

She knew that he wasn't on New Avalon, Prince's Regent Bishop Sortek was there managing the Crucis March. Her dear brother had been very public about his multi-month training exercise in the Combine with Hohiro Kurita and Precentor Martial Anastasius Focht, no doubt spending quite a bit of his off time with Omiko.  Coordinator Theodore Kurita had taken full advantage of her love-struck brother and was angling to either make an alliance (by him marrying Omi) and get him to put down the immediate rebellions that would occur, or allow him to die on an Anti-Clan operation that ultimately benefited the Draconis Combine alone. 

No doubt he (Teddy) wanted to get a Kurita-Steiner-Davion (“KSD”) kid as quickly and quietly as possible, that way if her brother died on some field of battle he could still be useful.  His lack of guile never ceased to amaze her and it was concerning that he knew about Coventry, no doubt ROM had leaked something to him from Duke Bradford.

“Hello Brother”

“Katherine, the Falcons are on Coventry, yet you didn't tell me.  I am coming in whether you want me to or not with the 1st Genyosha, ComGuard Invaders, and the Davion Heavy Guards.  So you can help me by telling me how many Falcons there are or I am coming to Tharkad after that.”

“Dammit Victor, the LAAF has this under control I already have forces in motion that will deal the death blow to the Jade Falcons.  If I have to I will send both Royal Guards to fight them off and lead them myself.  I am not some shrinking violet that needs her big brother to bail her out. I am The Archon of the Lyran Alliance.”

“Katherine how many Falcons are there on Coventry?  I am going to fight them, the Lyran Alliance was my nation first and you don't know what you are doing.”
  His tone left no room for negotiation, Victor had roughly three regiments near Tukayyid right now.  The Falcons certainly would be eager to fight him, he had long evaded them during the initial Clan invasion and they probably would try to take him as a Bondsman.  An amusing thought crossed her mind, Vlad declaring a Trial of Possession for him with Star Commander Katherine bid in the fight, he would lose his mind. 

The extra regiments might prove a greater diversion that might allow the task forces to set up and would save the LAAF three regiments that could be raiding Sudetan or Twycross instead.  He would probably try to pick up forces from the Kells and Exiled Wolves if he knew there were still six Clusters on-planet but she didn't want the Falcons defeated utterly by them, it would be catastrophic to LAAF morale.

“There are four Clusters on Coventry right now Victor, I have already sent three regiments to reinforce the garrison until the main task force can get into position.  You have clearance to enter and priority access to charging stations en route to Coventry.”

Now that it was out of the bag it was only a matter of time until it hit the airwaves and she needed to go into damage control mode.  She had no problem making her brother a hero but she was not going to have his foolish ass in her seat.  The Archon issued a wide band broadcast throughout the whole HPG Net,

“Citizens of the Inner Sphere, I have a grave announcement, the Jade Falcons have launched a large attack on Coventry and while the LAAF are fighting them as we speak, we cannot prevail alone.  The Archon-Prince has offered aid to the Alliance and I am imploring the other Successor States to show the Clans that we will not succumb to petty rivalries while they wage war against us all.  The Inner Sphere will stand or fall together under this threat.”

While Captain-General Thomas Marik and Chancellor Sun-Tzu Liao were not entirely supportive of the Lyran Alliance neither of them wanted the factories of Coventry to fall into Clan hands.  They were not willing to expend themselves though so they both sent a few Battalions.  Archon-Prince Victor Steiner-Davion gathered more forces from the Kell Hounds and Exiled Wolves and showed up to Coventry at the head of six regiments equally matching Khan Pryde in numbers, any fight would be hard fought.  The Jade Falcon's Khan Pryde knew that Wolf Khan Ward stood poised to attack her Occupation Zone if she didn't leave but was honor bound to engage and eager to claim The Archon-Prince as a bondsman. 

Then Victor, the man who never met a problem he couldn't solve with enough Battlemech, did something no Inner Sphere Commander had ever done to achieve victory.  He let the Falcons go, allowing the “defeated” Falcons to leave honorably as Wolves stood poised to kick the Jade Falcons out of the Inner Sphere.  Katherine was stunned, she watched the progress reports from Waco's Rangers and the Generals at Asgard, the Falcons managed to stay one step ahead of the Task Forces. They returned to stop the Wolves and severely damaged Waco's Rangers who nevertheless grabbed a lot of Clan Tech salvage.

ckosacranoid

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #23 on: 04 December 2017, 01:08:18 »
A very different take on the witch from cannon. Though this seems to have some mental issues it would seem. Very interesting setup on the way things went and filli g in some of the flanks from cannon and changing a few other things though. Neat story though.

AlphaMirage

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #24 on: 06 December 2017, 13:23:20 »
After becoming the Hero of Coventry with few shots fired, First Prince Victor Ian Steiner-Davion issued a long and grandiose speech about uniting the Inner Sphere against the Clans, the plebs ate it up.  Archon Katherine Steiner offered to host a Sphere-Wide Conference on Tharkad, “grateful” for her brother's assistance and “inspired” by the show of multi-nationalism fighting against the Clans.  Secretly she seethed and raged that Victor had cost her a chance to kill Clan Jade Falcon since she was aware of their weakness after the Refusal War.  Victor left Alliance space to return to Tukayyid and his war games, morale high, and would stay there until the Whitting Conference occurred in October.

Archon Katherine Steiner spent that time dealing with the confidence crisis that arose from the Coventry operation.  LIC Operatives and the LAAF's Public Relations were kept busy, some officers were cashiered out, others were sent to the Periphery March to take over garbage posts as punishment, and General of the Armies Nondi Steiner was allowed to retire.  General Maria Esteban took over as the LAAF's Top General which was a controversial move as both Katherine and General Esteban were both NAIS Alumni. There was an unfounded fear among the Lyran Academy graduates that their foreign influence would prove disastrous. 

With new blood in command the Archon commissioned the Alliance Jaegers LCT (Light Combat Team) Brigade using equipment from the former FedCom RCTs.  The aim was a regionally sourced rapid reaction force easily transported to hot spots and capable of dealing with an opponent until a heavier formation could respond.  Katherine wanted young officers eager to make a name for themselves as their commanders.  These new officers could experiment with different tactics much easier as a smaller formation and given latitude to experiment.  The commands would never go beyond five battalions, more would just be split off and added instead.  The prestige of being the 1st of something meant that the slots filled quickly.  Archon Katherine also rebuilt the 11th Lyran Guards and 3rd Royal Guards using up excess equipment and appointed more loyal and capable commanders.

Loremaster Katya Kerensky had covertly built a HPG repeater circuit from Tharkad to Tamar allowing the Wolves to have an inside peek on the Inner Sphere's current events.  She was quite eager to see what Katherine had planned for the proceedings.  Katherine was free with the information after all if there was a Second Star League it might lead to a series of interesting events that required planning.

The Whitting Conference needed to go off without a hitch and be a magnificent display of her young Lyran Alliance to the rest of the Inner Sphere.  Delegates and various government ministers of the five successor states, COMSTAR, and the Free Rasalhague Republic began arriving in September to hammer out the agenda.  Bringing together this many conflicting nations to even talk peaceably would be the ultimate test of diplomacy and negotiation.

Even with her extensive micromanagement the core portions of the Whitting Conference strained Tharkad's extensive infrastructure.  Katherine had been forced by polity to allow her political and personal enemies to attend.  The 2nd Royal Guards kept a close eye on the Kell Hounds, Grand Duke Morgan Kell and Exiled Wolf Khan Phelen Kell were enemies of the state as far as everyone in the Alliance was concerned.  Lohegrin operatives watched Intelligence Secretariat Tancred Sandoval, who arrived as part of the FedSuns delegation and “monkeywrenched” their covert opponent whenever they could.  Omiko Kurita also had tails, there was too much potential for her to be a spy; it would be a shame if “Free Skye sympathizers” took this golden opportunity to kill her.

Ultimately it turned out to be a successful conference and birthed a Second Star League with associated trade and non-aggression pacts between the member states.  A new Star League Defense Force would be formed from existing combat commands of all six states and the ComGuards.  This SLDF would launch a massive offensive against Clan Smoke Jaguar (despite Katherine’s insistence it be against the Falcons she was the only dissenting vote).  A new First Lord and Commanding General would be elected to head the endeavor.  COMSTAR would only cast a vote in the event of ties.

Now the main event; who would be the first First Lord of the Second Star League?  No leader could appoint themselves and every one of them had a single vote. 

Archon Katherine Steiner(-Davion), First Prince Victor Steiner-Davion, Coordinator Theodore Kurita, and Captain-General Thomas Marik endorsed Sun-Tzu Liao.

Chancellor Sun-Tzu Liao and Elected Prince Haakon Magnusson supported Katherine Steiner. 

While she was enraged that her gambit to be First Lord had been foiled she had to admit that Victor had finally started figuring politics out and that might be a problem especially if he came back a conquering hero. 

After the votes were cast he empowered his little sister Yvonne Steiner-Davion as Regent of the Federated Suns during his long absence and in the event of his possible death to serve until Arthur took over after his five years of military service.  Katherine was incensed by this announcement because her double, Lady Voight, had told her that Yvonne wanted to study at the University of Tharkad and that Victor hadn’t allowed her to leave New Avalon despite her dropping out of NAIS in protest. 

Katherine had never imagined her brother to be so cruel as to deny one of the only friendly relationships between the Steiner-Davion siblings.  The other being Victor and Peter, who still was missing despite the LIC looking for him for the past few years.  Arthur was close with Yvonne early one, the so called “twins” were legendary for the mischief they caused in Castle Davion, but had chosen to live with the Sandovals on Robinson after First Prince Hanse Davion's death and seemed happy with his adopted family.  Perhaps Victor had spent too much time with the Kuritas, the snakes were notoriously cold-blooded when it came to blood.

As Katherine could no longer have any her little sister was the closest thing she could have to a daughter and both sisters were equally angry with their brother for his actions.  Yvonne was only 19 and woefully under-prepared for this responsibility having never been groomed for succession.  Victor was never at Castle Davion already and Marshal Bishop Sortek, the Prince’s Champion, had finally accepted he would be Minister of the Crucis March until Victor tired himself out fighting.  Now as regent she would have to return to New Avalon and would be tied down with responsibilities that would put her at odds with her beloved sister.  Katherine fumed, Federated Suns Princes’ predisposition to lead from the Front was THE reason that the office of Prince’s Champion existed, this was an act of pure malice against her.

11/16/3058 07:17 Location – Archon's Office, The Triad, Tharkad

Archon Katherine Steiner(-Davion)'s 26th birthday was today but no one came bringing her the present she wanted the most, The First Lordship of the Second Star League.  Especially her brother, General Victor Steiner-Davion, who was the first appointment on a very packed agenda for today even as things began to wind down after three months of day to day meetings where she had actually lost weight from skipping meals.  Dressed casually she still tried to cover everything, even with seven months of treatment for the physical scars she had from Tamar it still would be at least till spring before she could wear anything “exciting” again. 

She was looking forward to tonight's gala, a final party before people she didn't like started to leave so she could get back to work and stop pretending she liked them.

Victor arrived in a SLDF Formal Uniform looking sharp, medium green and gold with three polished silver stars rising out of each Epaulet.  Having designed the new uniforms Katherine was impressed at her handiwork; 2nd SLDF guys were going to be lady-killers, especially if they came back.  She walked out from behind her desk; no Archon or First Prince, just brother and sister having a private conversation.

“Good morning General, I trust you had a good rest”

“I did yes, in my old room.  Drop the act Katherine.”

“Fine Victor, you have my assistance and that is all you shall have.  Words cannot describe how angry I feel at you for showing me up in my Capital.”

“You mean the one you stole from me!  You will never have my support sister not while you play games with other people's lives.  When I come back things are going to be different and if you stay on this dark path... I will come for you.”

“Well do come back brother, I hear those clanners are monsters.  It would be shame to lose you.”

“I will take my advice on the clans from someone who knows what they are talking about, sister.  alles Gute zum Geburtstag und wir sehen uns heute Abend.”


With that he turned and walked out no doubt plenty busy, returning to her desk and taking out her Codex she ran her hand across it's raised Wolf's head, “Ah, brother if only you knew” 

Thinking about it she was fairly certain that was the only time he had wished her a Happy Birthday in person.  Apparently their family dysfunction was to be driving force in the Inner Sphere, she had never wanted that to happen, thought if Melissa was out of the way there might be a chance.  If she hadn't lost everything at Solaris she would have refused the full duties of Archon to raise her and Galen's children.  Would have been a better mom than Melissa who took them on to early and in the process split up the siblings until they hardly knew or liked each other.  So many things could have gone differently that would have made the Inner Sphere a better place, and she was guilty of at least two.

The rest of the day went well. Katherine had a long lunch with Yvonne and Arthur, spending most of the remaining time preparing for her Birthday Gala that evening.  General Steiner-Davion's escort was Omiko Kurita and though she couldn't help but show her displeasure at the couple there was little she could do about it.  The Grand Ballroom of the Royal Palace was filled and that was impressive, she couldn't imagine all of the logistics involved but if it's one thing the Lyran Commonwealth was good for it was logistics.

The formal constitution of the Second Star League was signed the following week and Victor left with the Kurita and COMSTAR delegates toward Luthien to prepare.  Katherine spent two weeks with Yvonne until she tearfully had to return to New Avalon. 

As her sister's dropship lifted off, Katherine was left alone again.

AlphaMirage

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #25 on: 07 December 2017, 01:39:34 »
10/01/3065 21:37 Location - Royal Hunting Lodge, Tharkad, Federated Commonwealth

Katherine Steiner-Davion stood out on the balcony of the Royal Hunting Lodge on Tharkad in her white evening robes.  The planet's moon Marsden was full and moonlight twinkled off the freshly fallen snow deep in the Alistair Fells.  She took another sip of mulled wine, it was spicy, refined, and aromatic, a perfect companion for the harsh cold purity of winter's grasp.  A knock on her door broke her contemplation, she realized her robe had separated and re-cinched it before bidding her handmaiden Vanessa in.

I told you I didn't want to be disturbed.
Vanessa curtsied, in her hands was a verigraphed envelope addressed to Katherine Steiner-Davion personally, not the office of Archon-Princess of the Federated Commonwealth.  Few would dare to send her personal messages rather than send them to her office in the Triad.
Apologies your highness but this just came in from the Tharkad HPG, Priority Alpha from someone named Tigress.  The Royal Guard has already cleared it.

“Thank You Vanessa, please leave it on the nightstand I will summon you if I need to issue a response.

Vanessa curtsied again before quickly leaving Katherine's chambers.

Katherine turned the envelope over, removed the thick white paper, and activated it with her thumb, the advanced circuitry built into the paper displayed the message in blocky black metallic print.

Dear Kiddy Kat,

We have found a little yellow book
(See Sheepdog below) that belongs to you out here on the Rim.  You needn't worry we shall return it to you in time. I am very disappointed, you have been very naughty, your Mother should have spanked you more.  Next time we look for a tape.

Sincerely, Tigress


Katherine eyes narrowed with rage, Canopian Bitch!  How dare she! I am the Archon-Princess of the Federated Commonwealth!  I will not be blackmailed by some flyspeck nation on the far side of the Inner Sphere!  She threw her glass out onto the fells, it crashed and shattered, red liquid steamed in the cold snow like blood.

Damn that Emma Centrella, she had long played some of her best Loki operatives for fools.  If that idiot Sherman Maltin had just shot the bitch and Jeffery Calderon like he was supposed to instead of holding them hostage...  She wasn't even sure it wasn't Emma that pulled the trigger that ended the Protector's life. 

Her move to occupy Detroit, fast becoming an equal to Coventry or Furillo, but recognize the NCR as independent and with it blow millions of Concordat Bulls while still keeping trade robust.  The constant insurrections spurred on by Lohegrin in the NCR or the release of the Crimson Flu on Mechdur that had spread across the Aurigan Coalition hadn't even phased Emma, the Canopians withdrew and left the Concordat to clean up the mess.  Sun Tzu Liao could surely never ask for a better mother in law than one whose agents could move so freely or whose manipulations were so masterful.

Military action was out of the question as well the AFFC would need at least six full RCTs to secure the Capellan worlds needed long enough to execute a deep raid on Detroit and that would spark a larger war with the Trinity Alliance, a war she was not yet ready to fight.  Damn that Sun-Tzu Liao and his Trinity alliance, every three years he had another vote.  The Inner Sphere would surely be overwhelmed by Centrella-Liaos before a Steiner-Davion was First Lord of the Second Star League.

If the Dancing Joker ever made himself known again she would send him to Canopus.  There was no way she could continue to allow the Centrellas to make her seem the fool.  She privately wondered what kind of flowers the Magestrix liked, no, she probably didn't like flowers at all.  Her Magistracy was like a pitcher plant, exotic, growing in thin soil by drawing fools in with a little honey, once inside, nothing but corpses.  The MAF Resettlement Package had pulled far to many AFFC soldiers into that trap, it wouldn't be long before the Canopians overran the Capellans and joined the big leagues.

Katherine touched her shoulder, after winning the Regent's War Magestrix Centrella's had gifted her a fantastic horse.  This horse bucked her off the saddle, an impressive feat for such a skilled equestrian and in the process nearly broke her neck, surely not a coincidence, that horse quietly disappeared.  The injury had broken her scapula, she could feel the implants the NAIS doctors had put there to hasten an otherwise long healing process. 

“Kiddy Kat” how did Emma know what Hanse called her when she was a girl and what was with the mention of her Mother, she couldn't know about that, everyone that knew was dead or in hiding.

She slammed her fist into the balcony's cold stone railing, the entire Inner Sphere seemed to conspire against her.  Her guileless brothers and wicked mother started it, Melissa may have been loved by the public but she had nothing but scorn for Katherine.  The bomb just finished her off, her mother had been dead to her years before that fateful day, all she did was arrange payment.  It wasn't some grand ascension scheme Victor was always fated to die on some battlefield, Peter, Yvonne, and Arthur didn't have the fortitude or cunning to hold the Federated Commonwealth together without her and had all fallen into their rightful places.

What a cruel twist of fate that she should possess the Fox's cunning and killer instinct, be his oldest remaining child, and yet her claim was still so tenuous.  Like The Sword of Damocles one misstep and she would be lucky to be exiled.  She didn't want a Fifth Succession War when she set upon this ordeal, done everything to avoid open conflict costing her dearly in territory and perceived strength. But if there was going to be a war, it would be one that she would win to end it once and for all.

Regaining her composure she looked out over the Fells once more, a wolf howled in the distance.

Vlad's Wolves

He would soon arrive at Tharkad and make their plans known, then the Inner Sphere would part for her or be torn apart because of her.  There was a lot of work she needed to do before that day however, tomorrow she left for New Avalon and the Federated Suns, her jumpship having been delayed by technical problems.

When she turned around to go to bed she saw a small towheaded blue eyed girl stood in the doorway,

Mommy, I'm thirsty, can I have some water?

Of course Morgan, Katherine took the child's hand into hers and walked over to the bathroom to fill a cup with water before returning to the girl's room. 

Can you read me a story?

Sure sweetheart, where did we leave off?, the girl brought a well-worn book (Le Morte d'Arthur) to her mother who sat in a small chair by the bedside. 

This is your Aunt Yvonne's favorite  story, the little girl was lying on the bed facing Katherine, I'm really excited to meet her, the Archon-Princess tucked her in and gave her a kiss on the forehead,

I know, You will love Castle Davion; you will make new friends and I'll show you the secret rooms.  I'm so sorry you've had to spend so much time here without me, but Mommy had a lot of work to do

It's ok I know you have a lot of things to do as a Princess. I really wish you had a Prince to help you so we can spend more time together.

Me too Morgan but I'm afraid all of the Princes are gone, Katherine looked over at one of the only family portraits that had everyone in it.  It was on Gallery which was fitting as it was a sad scene, Yvonne was but a tiny baby and her Grandmother Katrina looked deathly ill soldiering on through her cancer treatments.  Her Aunt Nondi was still recovering from the DEST attack during the War of 3039 but they all came together for her 7th birthday party.  Hanse had pulled her from Sister Jocelyn's because he knew her Grandmother wouldn't make it through the school year and wanted his daughter to have one last happy memory of her.  11/16/3039

Where did they go?

One went far away and never came back, another was killed by a Dragon before he could become King, and the other is lost

How did you lose a Prince?

It was a chaotic time but if he ever finds his way home I make sure he never leaves again

Dragons aren't real Mommy

I'm afraid they are Morgan and it was not the first but will hopefully be the last Prince killed by a Dragon

Where did the first one go?

Worlds filled with monsters, but it is a very long and sad story and you need to go to bed young lady.  I hope you packed all of your things, we have to go across the Galaxy tomorrow.


OPERATION:SHEEPDOG
CLASSIFIED:  DEEPBLACK/LOKI SAP
Brief - Archon-Princess Katherine Steiner-Davion and Khan Vladimir Ward of the Wolves have negotiated a free passage arrangement.  Loki operatives, Black Ops Mercs, Wolf Watch, and Volunteers will be given a yellow code-book with a series of pass-phrases that they will use when challenged by a Wolf or AFFC Warship at the Zenith or Nadir Jump Points, transponder codes will also be provided by Wolf Watch and LIC to disguise them as regular merchant traffic.
Update - The flight of Watch Captain Ash Smoke Jaguar from Jade Falcon space has put one of the books in the wind.  She has used the material to evade detection even as she raided the Lyran Hinterlands for supplies, destination unknown.  The Titanfellers Mercenary group and support have been tasked with reclaiming it but they have gone dark on Astrokaszy.  A Loki Cleaner team is en route, assume SHEEPDOG is compromised.  Move on the SAP#589362 (Codename:PACKLEADER)
« Last Edit: 07 December 2017, 01:41:51 by AlphaMirage »

snakespinner

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #26 on: 07 December 2017, 04:21:41 »
Back to the Katherine we know and hate, a vicious bitch.
Looks like many of her plans are being discovered by her enemies. O0
I wish I could get a good grip on reality, then I would choke it.
Growing old is inevitable,
Growing up is optional.

AlphaMirage

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #27 on: 08 December 2017, 02:30:48 »
Worlds filled with Monsters

04/17/3060 18:39 Location – Hall of the Khans, Strana Mechty, Kerensky Cluster

Wolf Khan Vladimir Ward and his SaKhan Marialle Raddick left the Hall of the Khans in disgust, both removed their ceremonial masks and handed them to the attending Laborer.  His former Bondswoman’s trothkin General Victor Steiner-Davion was waxing lyrically about the evils of the Clans.  Vlad and Marielle had abdicated the vote but it mattered not, the Grand Council had betrayed their very nature by allowing this Freeborn a chance to refuse the invasion.  Cowards, that they should make deals with pretenders, the Star League was to be reborn under the Clans and a new Golden Century would follow.  Nevertheless he would win this “Great Refusal” as he has overcome every challenge set before him, the Wolves cared not for the concerns of sheep.

The relocation of Ghost Bear and betrayal of Nova Cat were unwelcome surprises.  However, Khan Ward already had plans on their soon to be former holdings.  No doubt that was cause for Abjuration or Annihilation but one step at a a time.

04/23/3060 15:17 Location – Bloody Basin, Strana Mechty

General Victor Steiner-Davion sat in his Daishi as the pulse laser burst brought down the final Ebon Jaguar of ilKhan Lincoln Osis’s Binary.  All that remained of the Jaguars was twisted burnt steel in the sands and three Elementals.  The battle had been hard fought, his foes had broken all the rules of Zellbrigen; Danai Centrella and others had been lost, a senseless tragedy but the risk anyone takes when they strap in to a Battlemech.  At least she had a good evening before she died, Victor felt guilty that he had brought her to this terrible place and over what Omi might think; she couldn’t hold it against him they weren’t married yet, it actually would have felt worse had he said no. 

“Lincoln Osis, this is Victor Steiner-Davion, surrender your forces and accept the results of this trial.  You are defeated and with it the Smoke Jaguar threat is ended.”

“Victor you may have defeated my Mechs but I challenge you personally.  The whole purpose of a Trial is to find out who is a better Warrior not who has the better War Machine.  Come out and fight me... or cowardly shoot me from that Dire Wolf.” 


Lincoln Osis stepped out of his Elemental Armor, his dark skin covered in sweat, he limped and had several injuries left over from the defense of Huntress.  No doubt his injuries were what kept him out until the end.  He was not at the top of his game but he was a monster, topping 2.3 meters and 172Kg of Battletested Clan Elemental.

Victor thought for a moment watching the man through his Daishi’s targeting screen. His mech had been heavily damaged and most of its weapons were offline but there were still enough lasers to turn the man into Char in the blink of an eye.  Now without a radio uplink Lincoln postured and beat his chest daring Victor to come out and fight him, making crude gestures of where to shoot him if he was a coward.

While Victor was normally even-keeled and pragmatic, he was enraged and decided to finish the Smoke Jaguar by his own hand and put this long and bloody campaign behind him.  The Daishi knelt down and Victor grabbed the Katana given to him by Coordinator Theodore Kurita as a pre-wedding gift.  Walking towards his foe his combat boots kicked up the fine red sand that gave the Bloody Basin its name; the sand blew in distinct “veins” it was a figurative heart for the Clans, a heart that Victor would cut out to save the Inner Sphere from their tyranny.  Along the way he discarded his cooling vest and drew the Katana; its polished blade reflected the light of an alien sun it now fought under far from home, he placed the scabbard into his belt.

He had been preparing for this moment all his life, the culmination of all the training and sacrifice he had endured for the people of the Inner Sphere.  Once Lincoln Osis was defeated he would return The Hero, marry Omiko, and remove his scheming sister from Tharkad if he had to in order to claim his Birthright of First Lord.  Then the Second Star League would bring about a new Golden Age and he wouldn’t need to win another battle.  He was sick of war, had seen far too much of it in his thirty years, tales of Valor were no comfort to the families of the fallen.

Victor drew closer to the Smoke Jaguar Khan, both were ready to do battle and his remaining unit was watching in the event that the Jaguars try something.  Lincoln Osis cracked his knuckles and stretched his neck. 

“I see you are not a coward, good”

The pair began their duel, Lincoln Osis was slower but he wasn't as injured as he let on from a distance.  His fists were hardened by decades of combat and hit like Sledgehammers.  Victor had been in many fights and slashed with his sword dealing what would have been mortal wounds for a normal man. But Lincoln Osis was no normal man, he was a Clan Elemental, the Khan of Smoke Jaguar, and the ilKhan; his will was iron, just as deadly as Victor’s steel and he reveled in the melee.  Sensing the end was near Lincoln gave Victor a golden opportunity to stab him, the Prince took the bait and drew closer stabbing his Katana into the monstrous man.  Faster than he had ever seen Victor's sword arm was grabbed and pulled deeper trapping him.  In his death throes the Elemental had one last strike to give and Victor knew it was the end.

As he saw the bloody fist coming down on him time slowed, every mistake and triumph, all of his good and bad deeds were remembered.  He knew better, the first rule of combat was never fight someone who has nothing left to lose but had been blinded by passion.  Everything that could have been, was, and never would be flashed through his mind as the instrument of his death neared.  He was at peace with it, he had done the best he could, and prayed the Inner Sphere would prove worthy of his sacrifice.

IlKhan Lincoln Osis's death blow took the life of The Golden Prince.  The two Warriors fell as one, their blood mixing with that of so many others that had fallen this day or along the way.  The red sands covered the fallen as the Kathil Uhlans ended the Smoke Jaguar Elementals in rage and wasted the fallen Mechwarriors.  Colonel Andrew Redburn jumped out of his Hellbringer and pushed the dead Jaguar Khan off Victor attempting to treat his injuries but it was too late and he cradled the dead man, weeping for his loss and that of the Inner Sphere.

Khan Vladimir Ward watched the end of this Trial from the wreckage of his Gargoyle and mourned the loss of Victor Steiner-Davion in his own clan way.  The Inner Sphere may have lost one of its best and that was a tragedy, some portion of his mind felt compelled to do something.  Returning to the Wolf Enclave of Zolotaya Gora after being recovered from the battlefield he looked over the current situation and offered to host the memorial service for the fallen. 

The Jade Falcons issued a Trial of Possession for the honor but were soundly trounced by Marialle Raddick and her Silver Keshik.  Khan Vladimir Ward gave an eloquent eulogy for those attending, swore that he would uphold the Truce (did not mention The Great Refusal), and wished no ill will on the Spheroids.  Any wounded would be treated by his clans' medics using their Star League era technology if they so desired.  Katya's Watch managed to snag a gifttake of Victor Steiner-Davion under the nose of the Kathil Uhlan and 10th Lyran Guard that formed the man's Honor Guard adding it to a potential future blood-house (the Jade Falcons would have done the same.  Hell Marthe Pryde wanted him as her personal “bondsman” on Coventry, she opened with a whole cluster to get a chance today but was bid down to a Trinary).

Results of The Great Refusal

Clan Blood Spirit/1st Genyosha - Death of Khan Schmitt, Combine Victory
Clan Fire Mandrill/Red Lancers - Lancers win handily
Clan Hell's Horses/3rd Drakons - Drakons Victorious
Clan Ice Hellion/Nova Cat - Khan Asa Toney and both Nova Cat Khans killed, despite that Nova Cat victory
Clan Jade Falcon/COMSTAR - Falcons Win
Clan Star Adder/1st Free Worlds - Star Adder Win
Clan Wolf/1st St Ives - Draw
Clan Smoke Jaguar/AFFC - Costly victory, all Jaguars, Danai Centrella, and Victor Steiner-Davion killed

Condition of the Homeworlds
Clan Ghost Bear's relocation to the Inner Sphere left the Snow Ravens with extra enclaves, Huntress and Londerholm became free fire zones between Ice Hellion, Goliath Scorpion, and Fire Mandrills.  Wolves and Hell's Horses as well as Ice Hellions struck out against Nova Cat Enclaves before the SLDF expedition left, they only managed to evacuate nearly everyone due to Snow Raven and Diamond Shark assistance.
« Last Edit: 08 December 2017, 03:28:22 by AlphaMirage »

2ndAcr

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #28 on: 08 December 2017, 02:58:59 »
 Well I sure did not see that coming. Now who is going to stop Katherine.

snakespinner

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Re: My AU, Katherine, White Wolf of Ragnarok
« Reply #29 on: 08 December 2017, 18:00:48 »
Now that is an interesting change to cannon. O0
I wish I could get a good grip on reality, then I would choke it.
Growing old is inevitable,
Growing up is optional.