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Author Topic: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War  (Read 80199 times)

panzerfaust150

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Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« on: 22 October 2015, 14:15:46 »
Clover Spear,
Book 1- A Time to Plan, A Time to Plot
Prologue

August 7th, 3053
Offices of the First Prince Emeritus
Castle Davion
New Avalon
Federated Commonwealth

  It was not easy to bore Hanse Davion, but his enforced retirement had finally accomplished it. Everyone else has something to do, I go and have one little heart attack and everybody starts coddling me like I am made of bone china! Hanse’s mind raged, retirement had been couched romantically. He would have more time for his hobbies and philanthropy, they said. He would be able to do as he pleased, they said.

  They lied, he realized. May my thrice damned doctors be given their own enforced retirements..and the home care nurses? Why do I need a home care nurse? I can walk, talk, wipe my own posterior, just what the hell do I need a home care nurse for? I am a very spry 70 years old I will have them know! I know they all mean well, but really, I was a ‘Mechwarrior for Book’s sake!

  The enforced inactivity was galling to Hanse. Hanse had lived his entire life as a man of action, a well-read, rakish man of action, but one nevertheless. The “gilded cage” his doctors had put him in was, to say the least, a sources of frustration. He knew his son was ready to rule. And, that Melissa was thinking of abdicating herself to spend all of her time with Hanse, and how Hanse was kind of dreading that, for Mel’s sake. She will go insane within the year. They don’t tell you retirement is not all it is cracked up to be.

  That said, Hanse did enjoy some of his enforced retirement, he had managed to hack his way into the NAIS system, and was occasionally appearing in student wargames as a black-painted Battlemaster. It was fun to mop the floor with those kids. But then, you were one of those kids, Hanse.  But if his doctors, or god forbid, his family found out, they’d kill him for sure..especially Melissa and Katherine. They say women are in our lives to civilize us..is it wrong I am bloody tired of being civilized?

  The other hobby Hanse had cultivated of late was reading…and writing. Having been a soldier and ruler most of his adult life, he had become a prolific op-ed writer to the Brunswick Chronicle, under the name John Sanderson, a friend who had been killed during his time with the 3rd Davion Guards. Forgive me, old comrade, for the deception I must use. Hanse didn’t want to be printed just because he used to be the First Prince, hence the pen name. Nobody at the Chronicle knew, all they did know was that Sanderson used to be a “high ranking military officer with connections at the palace who commented from time to time on military and political matters”. It spared a lot of people a lot of headaches..and spared Hanse from having to write his memoirs like some blowhard. Plus it helps my introspection and intellectual honesty to write about myself in the third person.

But Hanse had a new obsession of late. Though age had slowed him down, the ravages of age had spared his mind. And it was as sharp, and obsessive as ever. Stacked around his moderately (and lushly furnished) sized office was piles of books on a very specific force in history: The Soviet military. This was interspersed with stacks of BattleROMs and intelligence reports on the Clans. Thank you my son for keeping my security clearances current, though he thinks I am writing a book like Doctor Banzai..if only he knew what I was really up to…he and his mother would be furious. But what the hell are they going to do about it, send me to bed without supper? Hanse chuckled at that last thought with not a little bit of genuine mirth.

He had been attacking the problem that had been on everyone’s mind lately, that of the Clans. He hadn’t thought much of the conventional wisdom, which the Inner Sphere was going to have to use the truce to close the technological gap to take on the clans some 15 years from now. We have let those damn Clanners dictate the fight from the beginning. And that is precisely the wrong way to approach this.

Hanse had cast about for examples in history to approach the Clan issue. He knew much of their success had come from three factors; One was surprise, they had had the unknown on their side, and that advantage had faded by the time Tukayyid had rolled around. The second, that had been their supposedly superior training, but as he had looked over the BattleROMs, he wasn’t so convinced. Sure, they were excellent individual mechwarriors, but their ability to coordinate at the operational and strategic levels stunk, for lack of a better word. Their offensive, should, by all rights, have collapsed from the logistical strain a year earlier than it did, and it damnned well did on Tukayyid, but the Clans took stoicism to a new art form. They simply shorted their lower classes, from all the intelligence he had been getting from the LIC reports coming out of the Clan OZ. The third was painfully obvious, their technology. But their logistical hangups, even with omnimech technology (which should have freed them to some degree from said logistical issues), suggested that their industrial base wherever they came from was to some degree, limited.

All of these things made them vulnerable. To Hanse, they resembled the German Wehrmacht after the first winter of invading the Soviet Union. They were powerful, and had survived, but they were still weaker than when they had begun. And that alone, to Hanse, provided an opening. One that could be exploited.

It had become rather interesting material to Hanse, and while logic, not to mention good sense had stated he should probably write a paper for NAMA about it, he knew that would get the damn thing stamped “Most Secret”, filed away, and a stern talking to by Melissa and Victor. No, if I cannot convince my visitor today, then the whole enterprise is for naught.

What Hanse had learned was interesting. Contrary to many of his instructors at NAIS, the Soviets were not a bumbling force that had relied solely on mass, but had developed a very refined form of Operational Art that fit the solution he was looking for with the Clans to a “T”. The Soviet concepts of massed fire, deep battle and seeking to force the enemy to fight a series of encirclement battles he was destined to lose was the solution versus the Clans. It would not matter the amount of technology he had, they would mass the numbers needed at the point of decision, and swamp the Clans. And the Federated Commonwealth would do it better than the Soviets did…the AFFC was an all-volunteer force that had a good standard of training. Hell the old American Military had a force that pretended to be the Soviets for many years…and did it better than they did…why can’t we?

All he had to do now was convince his oldest friend that it was possible.

A knock at the heavy oak door brought Hanse out of his reverie. His head perked up and he shouted “Enter” far more brusquely than he had intended. The door creaked like the bones of an old man, and it opened slowly to reveal the form of Ardan Sortek, Ardan was slightly bent with age, as he had just turned 60 last month, with his remaining hair thinning, and shot through with grey. He was dressed in his customary AFFS fatigues, even though the uniform of the day was undress greens, except during state occasions (which were often). Sortek had been the Prince’s Champion, and was still on the General Staff at Mount Davion, though he was handing over more of his responsibilities to his aides. His craggy face was cracked with a beaming smile. Hanse and Ardan didn’t get to see too much of each other due to Ardan’s remaining responsibilities, not to mention Ardan writing his memoirs.

“Looking good, Hanse, how is retirement?” Ardan inquired, still wearing his wry smile as he unceremoniously deposited himself in a plush couch across from Hanse’s lounge chair. .

“Ardan, I will spare you my answer, as you already know what it is” Hanse stated with a trace of exhausted mirth. “Retirement, is, to put it in simple words, boring.”

“So I hear, I come bearing a request from Mel and Katherine for you to please stop terrorizing the palace staff and the head of the military archives.” Sortek replied, spreading his hands in a non-committal gesture.

Hanse shook his head “Now Arden, would little old me do such a thing? I am under doctor’s orders to-“

Arden’s face creased with a wry smirk as he interrupted “Um, Hanse, we both know that is bull. You don’t follow a lick of the orders of your doctor since you agreed to abdicate, and your idea of retirement is just working an 8 hour day like the rest of us mortals. You will be happy to know it is a work ethic your son shares.”

Ah Victor, I guess he is finding out about how heavy the crown really is..not that he had any illusions about that. Hanse mused. “Arden, have a question for you, and before you answer it, I still have my security clearances, and this office is swept for bugs on a regular basis.”

Arden’s features went blank. His face said it all, He knows about some of my extra-curricular activities. “I know about the Brunswick Courier, Hanse. John Sanderson? Anybody who knows you knew about him. He got the Sunburst for what he did on Halstead Station, posthumously of course. You really ought to be more careful. MIIO had to pay the editor a visit when he got too curious about who John Sanderson was, and compared it to some of your speeches!”

“Does Victor or Mel know?”

“Not yet, Hanse, but they will find out shortly, because Quintus is going to have to tell them. And they are both going to lose it. I am here to head it off at the pass.” Arden leaned forward, with a look of concern in his eyes. “Hanse, you have a heart condition. Do what other parents do, harass your kids into making you grandparents.”

“Haven’t got time for that. “ Hanse waved off Ardan’s concern, dismissing it as trivial. “’Old friend, I have been doing a lot of reading, and thinking.  I have time for plenty these days.”

Ardan had seen that look before, the look had been in Hanse’s eyes when he had first thought of Operation RAT, or the abortive invasion of the Combine. The old Hanse was back. But he wasn’t the same old spry Hanse Davion, or was he?

“I have been giving some thought about the Clan problem. Our enemies have some serious structural and doctrinal issue, ones we should be exploiting sooner, rather than later-“

“Hanse, we have thousands of staff officers here and on Tharkad, whose job it is to study the damn problem, and you think you, with a second rate holo map, and piles of old books-“ gesturing to the cluttered office “-suddenly have a solution to the problem?”

Hanse nodded.

Ardan exhaled “Ok old friend, well, if I am going to get in trouble with Melissa and Victor, we might as well make it worth our while, show me what you have…”

*******************************************

..To say that the planning for what eventually became Clover Spear was unorthodox is an understatement. Hanse Davion was always a sharp operational and strategic mind with a penchant for thinking outside the box. Operation RAT, the abortive ’39 conflict, all of these had used the enemy’s structural weakness against them in a brutal, yet elegant format. But the Clans had scared the Inner Sphere silly, to say the least. They had struck without warning, and had savaged half-a-hundred regiments and taken a hundred worlds. The few victories against them had been costly, and had cost Hanse Davion what was left of his health. He was the last person anyone would have thought to have come up with a plan to launch a counter offensive only six years after the invasion.

  But sometimes, serendipity does find itself in the strangest of places.

   Page 96, Ch 9,  Marshal Reginald Herrigan, AFFC (ret) “Punch the Falcon and Stomp the Viper - My View of Clover Spear”
« Last Edit: 22 October 2015, 14:19:26 by panzerfaust150 »
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gladius

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #1 on: 22 October 2015, 22:05:39 »
Wow: I wasn't expecting to come across this! A surviving Hanse who devotes himself to planning a counteroffensive against the Clans, the military genius freed by ill health from the demands of court and politics to return to his element: overturning decades and centuries of accepted wisdom and working out how to kick ass.

Between this and Chris O'Farrels 'Ice Duchess' series, I'm reminded of this early days when I started to read Battletech books, and was drowning in awesome ... Before everything started to go to hell.

Applying Soviet tactics against the Clans is brilliant (and don't think I missed the Clan=Nazi connotations, either), and I love the image of Hanse dropping his avatar into NAMA sims to teach the young whippersnappers how they did things in the days before XL engines, ER lasers and C3 systems.

Please, please continue this quickly and regularly!

Shadow_Wraith

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #2 on: 22 October 2015, 22:20:09 »
 O0 This was a very surprising take on "what if Hanse Davion" survives!    looking forward to more soon!

snakespinner

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #3 on: 23 October 2015, 01:16:16 »
Tag
I wish I could get a good grip on reality, then I would choke it.
Growing old is inevitable,
Growing up is optional.
Watching TrueToaster create evil genius, priceless...everything else is just sub-par.

imperator

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #4 on: 23 October 2015, 02:31:18 »
The Fox survives!!!
Their is no problem Jump Jets and an assault class auto-cannon can't handle.

Sharpnel

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #5 on: 23 October 2015, 05:43:50 »
One ping, Vasili, one ping only *ping*
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Davout73

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #6 on: 23 October 2015, 18:44:26 »
Waiting to see who your Tukhachevsky is going to be.   O0

Dav
Kiiro no Torii, a Battletech AU, found here:
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DOC_Agren

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #7 on: 23 October 2015, 23:17:58 »
"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!"

Dave Talley

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #8 on: 23 October 2015, 23:34:57 »
YES!
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JA Baker

Cidwm

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #9 on: 24 October 2015, 10:56:30 »
Great start, looking forward to more in the future.

mikecj

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #10 on: 24 October 2015, 11:00:03 »
This started well!
There are no fish in my pond.
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panzerfaust150

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #11 on: 26 October 2015, 16:31:50 »
Thanks for all the kudos guys, Chapter 1 is in progress. I don't want to do too many chapters of the planning process..and I am going to do both a story...and a sourcebook view of the fighting. Kinda like Davout, but perhaps not as nice with the maps. I have to tell you, I have two other stories I am working on as well. Neither are CBT. One is an AU of Daria in a Third World War in the 1980s..and the other is a Terminator:SCC fanfic, which has been a bit dormant, but I will finish it.

But yeah, I love the praise. It helps a lot.
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panzerfaust150

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #12 on: 28 October 2015, 12:41:53 »
Situation Room
Fox’s Den, Mount Davion
New Avalon
Federated Suns
February 20th, 3054


Dad, I really hope you are right about this. A furrow of genuine worry creased Victor Ian Steiner-Davion’s 24 year old face, making him, for a moment, look older than his father. Uneasy lies the head that wears the crown. Now I know why you had me read Shakespeare, Dad. It is good training to be a ruler in this nutty little Inner Sphere of ours.

The main situation room had been used for centuries for moments great and small in the history of the Federated Suns. It was dominated by a large, oval table made of New Avalon maple, with sturdy legs, and custom chairs that could bring up personal holographic displays to bring up information of interest to the user. The wall was also covered in flat screen holodisplays that could be used to display troop movements or situation reports.
 
Victor was right now listening to the First Prince Daily Brief or FPDB, being presented by a team from DMI’s MI2, MI7 and MIIOs Department of Information Gathering. Surrounding Victor was representatives of the FC General Staff, the Federated Suns State Command, the Privy Council, as well as Quintus Allard (who purportedly never missed one of these meetings since being named to the post of Minister of Intelligence in 3022).

It was why Victor was damn glad he had Katherine to his right, and Galen to his left. Katherine was very good at seeing the political implications of things, and she was going to make a good “executive officer” when Victor got kicked upstairs in the near future. Galen was good at seeing through the “bovine scatology” but had, over drinks, asked Victor “Victor, my friend, my comrade, whatever did I do to you to get posted to this godforsaken nuthouse?”

Victor smiled, and simply said “This is for hitting me on Trellwan.”

Right now, Victor was listening to the intelligence implications of new Marik agricultural and medical assistance to the Capellan Confederation. The analysts, who looked to a man like guys who did not enjoy much sunlight, or the company of the opposite sex, were to a man and woman, pasty white, and way, way too excited about their subject matter. Quintus, what the hell were you thinking letting this lot present today? This is something that could have been dealt with at the ministerial level…

“…the amount of civil and surprisingly, military traffic in these humanitarian shipments can only be characterized as alarming, and suggest that we have underestimated both the Free Worlds League’s  medical and agricultural output by a factor of 1.5, and their jumpships by a factor of three, which, even with recent windfall profits from their arms sales to the rest of the Inner Sphere, are impossible in such a short amount of time.”

Katherine raised her hand. Victor blanched, Uh oh, guess I get another lesson by little sis in what I don’t know about politics and economics…

“Um, excuse me Dr. Felton, I hate to interrupt this very complete, and fascinating report, but did you say we have grossly underestimated both the civil productive capability as well as the jumpship capacity of a major enemy of the Federated Commonwealth?” Katherine queried, there was a look of concern on her face..one that suggested a slowly growing sense of alarm.

Dr. Felton, who was a pudgy, bespectacled individual, who struck Victor as a bit of an eccentric, swallowed loudly, glanced at Quintus Allard, who simply nodded his approval. “Yes, mam, that is exactly what we are saying.”

Victor’s stomach bottomed out. “How in the hell did we miss this?”

Dr. Felton chuckled nervously..”Uh…well..your Highness, we only just began applying a new method of traffic analysis to the problem. Whomever was doing this, they knew our old methods…and that’s not easy, or public, sir. And that should scare this even more.”

Marshal Jackson Davion leaned forward, his face being bathed in hololight as he didn’t bother to turn his personal display off. “Any idea who is backing them?”

“Sir, we are running some financial forensics, with the cooperation of the Ministry of Justice, and the early indicators..mind you, sir, they are preliminary..but it might be the Word Of Blake, they are-“

Victor cut him off with a wave “We all know who the Word of Blake are, but, Dr. Felton, but do they really have the financial wherewithal to pull this off?”

Dr. Felton simply stated “We have no reason to believe otherwise.”

Victor shook his head in disgust, Damn you Sun-Tsu. Well, you are a crafty little slimeball. I really need to commend all involved here. This was a damn good catch. I would have missed this easily, but not Katherine. I guess NAIS Poli Sci IS a good department.

“Ok, here is what is going to happen.” Victor intoned softly, but with an air of command in his voice. An unofficial rule of the Fox’s Den is that there was to be no raised voices in the Situation Room. No member of the Davion family had ever broken that rule.

“Katherine, form a team to study this. You saw it before the rest of us did, figure out the implications of this, with attention to the Word of Blake, and present me a personal report within 10 days, Dr. Felton, consider yourself on this team. By the way, this thing just became a codeword access level project. If the Blakists are involved, I don’t want a damn word of this going out via HPG, couriers or FAX only.”

Everyone nodded.  “And Doctor Felton? Use small words, will you. I know you guys worked very damn hard on this thing, but honestly, ‘COMINT meta data analysis? You are making this ‘Mechjock’s eyes glaze over.” Everyone, including Dr. Felton, had a chuckle at that.

“I apologize, your Highness. We in the Traffic Analysis section of IDG get really, really excited when somebody calls us to the Fox’s Den. Not a lot of people get what we do.”

Everyone had another chuckle, Victor raised his hand again and spoke “Dr. Felton, if this bears out, you have discovered a major threat to the Commonwealth, and at the right time. Be proud of that. My sister and her staff can help you polish this thing. But it is solid, it must be if Katherine and Quintus are that concerned. Thank you Dr. Felton.”

With that, Dr. Felton’s team grabbed their papers and made for the exit, as there was one more presentation to be made. And in the light of this new information, it made that decision more difficult to make.

Hanse Davion strode into the Situation room like he had never left. His posture, though stooped by age, was still fairly erect. His now grey hair shone like stars in the sky, and he proudly wore the uniform of his beloved 3rd Guards, and it gleamed, gleamed so brightly that a NAMA drill instructor would have wept. And his eyes…Hanse’s eyes burned with a cyan fire that Victor had not seen in them since he was a boy. Putting on quite the show, Dad. Now, can you deliver the goods?

Hanse flashed his winning smile at the room, it was genuine, he was glad to be back in his element, planning a massive military operation that, again, could change the very face of the Inner Sphere, whether it succeeded, or failed.

“Hello everyone, I will admit it is good to be back, haven’t seen this place in a while. I will spare all of us the wool gathering of an old man, and get right to it: We have let the Clans dictate the nature, and tempo of this conflict for far, far, too long.”

The room filled with murmurs and the assembled generals and ministers looked at each other incredulously. 

Katherine was the first to speak “Father, how in the world do you expect to change that, they have brought low some of our best regiments, and taken hundreds of worlds, I am not trying to sound defeatist, but-“

Hanse held up his hands in a gesture of supplication.

“Katherine, I will get to that, but first, a minor, and hopefully, brief history lesson.”

Hanse produced a remote for the main holoprojector from his pocket and clicked a button, a slide appeared that
read simply: “Clan Advantages” in black text against a soft blue background.

“When the Clans arrived in the Inner Sphere, they had, as far as conventional military wisdom is concerned, three main advantages, we are going to examine them, and address why, well, those advantages are either overstated, or in some cases, non-existent at this point.”

Hanse then clicked a button on his remote and text appeared on the slide that read simply, “1. Surprise”.

“Ladies and gentlemen, this was one of the major Clan allies in their whirlwind conquest of their occupation zones. Surprise. They had it in spades. We knew little to anything about them. Hell, you all remember the rumors. We thought they were damned aliens, until Jamie Wolf had his little meeting with us.”

Victor winced uncontrollably at the memories of the pain some of the training inflicted. Yeah, that was fun, but in some ways…a waste. Sure it encouraged some unity among us, but Sun-Tsu Liao..it did nothing for him…The very mention of Sun-Tsu had caused Victor’s right fist to curl in anger. Careful, Victor, he is something of your blind spot, focus on the Clans. They are more of a threat then that madman will ever be.

“As the old saying goes, ladies and gentlemen, ‘the best way to know someone, is to fight them’. I would say we know the Clans pretty well now. Well enough for me to present our other two points, with a fair degree of confidence.”

“We know the rules behind their warrior culture, we know how it functions, and more importantly, we know why. We know if functions on artificial rules, and a monopoly of violence that is even more pronounced than anything found in the Inner Sphere, even in the Capellan Confederation. And even the Capellans, ladies and gentlemen, do not radically shortchange their own citizenry to the degree the Clans do to keep their warrior class going. Just look at the Clan logistical collapse on Tukkayyid. What many of you don’t know is that for the first time in hundreds of years, there were food riots on Tamar? Tamar, a breadbasket world..had no food? Why, because the Clans collectivized the farms under their Merchant caste. This is but one example. Their logistical system is a shoestring, and it will collapse under another major strain. One this plan intends to provide.”

Hanse then clicked the button again, and another point appeared on the slide “2. Training”.

“We have all been hearing how the Clan warrior is the epitome of warfare. They are unstoppable paragons, and we just got lucky. Nonsense!”

The room, for the first time in hundreds of years, exploded in an uproar.

Hanse put up his hands again..”Quiet please, ladies and gentlemen, QUIET!” Hanse’s command voice came out, and all, even his own children obeyed, and sat meekly down. Sure, Hanse wasn’t First Prince anymore, but he still could engender the loyalty and respect of one with a simple voice or gesture.

“I know I have not faced them across a battlefield, ladies and gentlemen. I understand that. But everything I have read, and seen. The Clans produce men and women whom are very good individual warriors. But ask yourselves? Those of you who have faced them, what kind of real operational or strategic ability have they shown? Their bidding system is a unique way to guarantee economy of force, for example, but it doesn’t encourage mass at all, and their dueling system while a morally satisfying means of warfare, only works when the opponent is willing to reciprocate, and is inferior technologically, if the Clans had the same technological standard we had, they would lose.”

“Our doctrine, our way of making war, it is based on thousands of years of refinement and development. Everyone from Sun-Tsu, to Clauswitz, to Kerensky. The Clans are of the opinion that if it did not come from Kerensky, it must be rubbish. I am willing to go out on a limb and state that I do not think the father would have approved of what the son created. The Clans, when it comes to the doctrinal underpinnings of war, or the strategic and operational principles of said same, know nothing, and are happy to remain ignorant, mainly because their technology is so dominant.”

Hanse then pushed the button on his clicker again, and a third point appeared “3. Technology”.

Hanse exhaled, and took an offered glass of water, of which he drained greedily. “The Clan technological advantage is steep, but history is filled with nations who were technologically advanced, but still lost wars because they refused to pay more than lip service to the other Principles of War. Nazi Germany is one that comes to mind. The Clans, in fact, are making the same mistake. They are counting on own ‘decadence’ to do their work for them. They had counted on being greeted as liberators, while enslaving entire populations and calling it a lofty name like “bondsman”. Their logistical system is so bad, that they are living off the land like the Mongols, or an ancient army, certainly not an army of the 31st Century. It is why they failed at Tukkayyid and to a lesser extent, Luthien. To continue the Nazi Germany analogy, right now, the Clans have fallen short of their goal, Terra. They have survived the winter, but now, their entire enterprise lacks any strategic direction. It is a military endeavor without a goal, really. They claim they are going to Terra, but ComStar has barred that door. They have yielded the strategic initiative, we must, for the future of the Inner Sphere, pick up the baton..and ram it down the throat of the Clans.”

Hanse then clicked his remote once more, and a map of the Jade Falcon Occupation Zone soon materialized, then one by one, colored arrows appeared, denoting proposed movements of forces against target worlds. The plan was focused, ambitious, but it was a sledgehammer. The proposed force ratios were brutal, as much as anywhere from 4 to 6 to one against the Jade Falcons or Vipers. It was the opposite of the Clan way of war. It was not meant to take worlds back so much, as it was to destroy the ability of the Jade Falcons and Vipers to make war, probably for all time.

Victor whistled softly…  “Dad, keep going…you have our attention.”

Hanse Adrian Davion smiled. But it was not a mirthful smile. It was one that promised terrible, awful things to come for those who had dared to hurt, and enslave his people. I dedicated my life to defending the people of the Federated Suns, and later the Commonwealth, as first a soldier, then a ruler. The Kuritans, the Capellans, I understood, but even they, they are not what the Clans are. They are a threat to our very humanity. No..this time, we finish this. What no one knew is that Hanse had seen footage taken by MIIO, LIC and DMI operatives of the Jade Falcons engaging in “thamzing”. Hanse had launched a war once on a moral point..there had also been practical ones..but he had never forgiven the Liaos, or their brood, not for what they had done to his double. But now, this, this was a cancer, that needed to be cut out.

And cut out it would be.


I remember the temperature dropped ten degrees after Hanse began to smile. I hadn’t seen that smile on his face since the first wave of Operation RAT. I knew that the Jade Falcons and Steel Vipers were about to have a very bad day. The average age of the Clan warrior class was 25, and learning from their past did not seem to be their strong suit...Clan Loremasters and their "Remembrance" not withstanding...They say the best teacher is the enemy. I got the feeling we were about to teach what we had learned to the Falcons, in spades.

Hanse had picked one hell of a hobby for his retirement.

Ardan Sortek, “Reflections of a Soldier”, New Avalon Press, 3071
« Last Edit: 29 October 2015, 14:45:35 by panzerfaust150 »
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mikecj

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #13 on: 28 October 2015, 14:52:25 »
Great chapter!  I love the endings from other folks' memoirs
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Dave Talley

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #14 on: 28 October 2015, 16:11:57 »
great stuff
minor corrections, Hanse's middle name is Adrian, and Sortek's name is Ardan
minor glitches but amazing story
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gladius

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #15 on: 28 October 2015, 19:00:38 »
Good chapter. There were some points, particularly during the first briefing, where words were missing, and some sentences were just weird, but the second half was brilliant.

Sorry, I'm not familiar with 'thamzing'?

Edit: FedCom RCTs really are the best hammer to use against Clans, masses of integrated combined arms. Personally I'd cut back on the infantry regiments and double the artillery and aerospace assets, but that's just me.
« Last Edit: 29 October 2015, 00:59:05 by gladius »

croaker

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #16 on: 29 October 2015, 02:09:02 »
Good chapter. There were some points, particularly during the first briefing, where words were missing, and some sentences were just weird, but the second half was brilliant.

Sorry, I'm not familiar with 'thamzing'?

Edit: FedCom RCTs really are the best hammer to use against Clans, masses of integrated combined arms. Personally I'd cut back on the infantry regiments and double the artillery and aerospace assets, but that's just me.

'Thamzing' is a social-engineering tactic popularized in Maoist China, in which a selected victim would be publicly shamed and beaten and compelled to testify to various "crimes" which mostly consisted of egregious violations of the new order's desired culture, few to none of which they had actually committed.

In other words, picking somebody off the street at random (most likely because they looked at a warrior funny), and torturing them to show the recently-conquered civilians what happens when you don't play by Clan rules.

snakespinner

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #17 on: 29 October 2015, 02:23:10 »
You first start off with something minor as the FWL has 3 times as many jumpships than expected.
Then you talk about 4 or 6 to 1 attacks against the Jade Turkeys and the rusty Vipers.

Wonder where the jumpships to carry the troops will come from.
Very nice. O0
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gladius

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #18 on: 29 October 2015, 02:47:18 »
'Thamzing' is a social-engineering tactic popularized in Maoist China, in which a selected victim would be publicly shamed and beaten and compelled to testify to various "crimes" which mostly consisted of egregious violations of the new order's desired culture, few to none of which they had actually committed.

In other words, picking somebody off the street at random (most likely because they looked at a warrior funny), and torturing them to show the recently-conquered civilians what happens when you don't play by Clan rules.
Thanks, hadn't run across that one before.

You first start off with something minor as the FWL has 3 times as many jumpships than expected.
Then you talk about 4 or 6 to 1 attacks against the Jade Turkeys and the rusty Vipers.

Wonder where the jumpships to carry the troops will come from.
Very nice. O0
Hmm, WoB pulling out the resources of their Hidden Worlds early?

Oh, and while I love most of this, having Victor not being concerned by discovering that the FWL's economy and transport fleet of JumpShips (which are vital for, among other things, transporting regiments of 'Mechs) are greater than expected ... it stretches belief by a bit. Now, if they had been couching their results in arcane economic language that Victor was having trouble understanding, that would make sense ... but this is wielding the 'Victor knows nothing outside of the military' hammer a bit more liberally than most. He's studied military history and theory, so he knows the importance of strong economies and large JumpShip fleets.

panzerfaust150

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #19 on: 29 October 2015, 09:29:34 »
I first want to apologize for the errors, self edits are hard to do, if not impossible. You will ALWAYS miss something. I wish we had a standing beta group around here. I would SO make use of it.

@gladius: It isn't that Victor isn't knowledgeable...it's that Doctor Felton isn't used to briefing high level folks who don't get into the weeds that often, and are hearing the same thing ten different ways at times. My version of Katherine is becoming a foreign policy/politico nerd and would have done well at MIIO or DMI in the analysis side, if events had not intervened (more on that later).

Victor is aware of the implications, hence his very strong reaction. Moreover, Dr. Felton has discovered something that is going to have interesting implications down the road. Simply put..watch this closely, there will be more along these lines about what is going to occur...and more importantly, why.

My version of Victor has grown a little since his dad abdicated only two years ago. He might even be a bit more unsure of himself then he should be, like any truly intelligent man, he is more aware of what he doesn't know, than what he does. But, in his defense, he has the FS riding on his shoulders. He has Kat and Galen to lean on heavily, and delegates a lot, which is a good and bad thing, depending on the task. Victor will mature as the story goes on, but he is new to the job folks...give him another year, and he will be able to fly solo for the most part, the trouble is..by then, will he be kicked upstairs? Time will tell.

@Snakespinner: The FC will get their own share of serendipity, but it will come with a cost, and it will be one that will be difficult to bear in the coming years...but it must be borne, as the other options all stink. Nobody's said it, but all of the ruling family of the FC realize, unlike in OTL, if something strong isn't done about the Clans, then the political toroidal forces buzzing about the FC will tear the alliance apart. It is as much domestic self-preservation as it is looking strong. Also, the initial "frontage" if you will, will be quite narrow...not saying it totally obviates the need for lots of transport...but that the needs may not be WAY out of the realm of possibility. (Think more narrow thrusts then wide offensives, the idea is to shatter the clan "crust", then release the reserves to wreak havoc in a series of "deep battles" against important nodal worlds and the OZ Capitals. BTW, what the heck was the Steel Viper OZ Capital?)

But the FC is not the only lens we are going to examine here...nor will Hanse be the only way we see it. I will go third person from time to time (Davout really inspired this effort).

As for changes in the structure of the FC...lemme put it this way...Artillery is finally going to get it's due in the CBT universe...I always thought the game underestimated the capabilities of artillery...what a battalion (18 guns) can do to a 1000x1000m grid square now beggars description....The Clans will experience that, and the FC are going to take a lesson from the Soviets and both centralize artillery assets at the RCT and brigade/division level...and bring back that old standby...the mortar. In short, the Clans are about to find out what a lot of metal landing on your head feels like. But the training and integration of said assets into the larger AFFC will take a while...about a year to be precise.O0

In short, I have a plan here guys, and no, while there are Hidden Worlds in this CBT universe...they are mostly stockpiles of equipment and consumables, as well as probably enough people to form another two divisions and the economic base to support said same (This includes a nice pile of jumpships..and a few warships...but nowhere near the insane levels of warships we saw in canon). This won't be the Jihad refought. 

« Last Edit: 29 October 2015, 09:45:43 by panzerfaust150 »
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panzerfaust150

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #20 on: 29 October 2015, 10:09:02 »
'Thamzing' is a social-engineering tactic popularized in Maoist China, in which a selected victim would be publicly shamed and beaten and compelled to testify to various "crimes" which mostly consisted of egregious violations of the new order's desired culture, few to none of which they had actually committed.

In other words, picking somebody off the street at random (most likely because they looked at a warrior funny), and torturing them to show the recently-conquered civilians what happens when you don't play by Clan rules.

I stole that from Warriors of Kerensky, where it is mentioned as having been done when the Clans retook the Pentagon Worlds. I see no reason why it was not carried out on Inner Sphere worlds as it is the closest frame of reference the Clans have. Again, it also proves the Clans really don't care much for any history, on a lot of these worlds, it is going to create insurgents by the raftload...and Hanse was studying the Soviet way of war...Some good reading might be the Partisan war from 1941-44 and "the war of the rails" in the German rear. Things will begin to get very, very brutal indeed...and the Clan indoctrination sweeps will begin to resemble German anti-Partisan operations...and all of the evils that that engendered.
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croaker

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #21 on: 29 October 2015, 11:07:56 »
I stole that from Warriors of Kerensky, where it is mentioned as having been done when the Clans retook the Pentagon Worlds. I see no reason why it was not carried out on Inner Sphere worlds as it is the closest frame of reference the Clans have. Again, it also proves the Clans really don't care much for any history, on a lot of these worlds, it is going to create insurgents by the raftload...and Hanse was studying the Soviet way of war...Some good reading might be the Partisan war from 1941-44 and "the war of the rails" in the German rear. Things will begin to get very, very brutal indeed...and the Clan indoctrination sweeps will begin to resemble German anti-Partisan operations...and all of the evils that that engendered.

Yeah. It's very likely also practiced in the Capellan Confederation, which is probably where Hanse is familiar with it from. And was yet another part of his motivation to destroy them.

panzerfaust150

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #22 on: 29 October 2015, 11:29:32 »
I would guess it would depend on the Chancellor, but yeah, I could see it being a practice of elements of the Mask and the State, not so much the CCAF. Though the Death Commandos think nothing of committing all kinds of mayhem.

Does Hanse wear a halo, nope. But there are certain things that stick in his craw...and seeing something like this done to his people...yeah, that is really going to send him over the edge.

Also, one other point, Victor's enmity is now more focused at Sun-Tsu Liao than historically. The heart attack happened as per canon, except for the part of Hanse dying, because of some timely CPR by both he and Galen till the paramedics got there. Victor already didn't think much of Sun-Tsu after Outreach...now he hurt Dad. Victor does not react well to this. Woe betide Sun-Tsu if he does something stupid...and would your author have Sun-Tsu do that? He might....
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gladius

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #23 on: 29 October 2015, 20:28:44 »
I stole that from Warriors of Kerensky, where it is mentioned as having been done when the Clans retook the Pentagon Worlds. I see no reason why it was not carried out on Inner Sphere worlds as it is the closest frame of reference the Clans have. Again, it also proves the Clans really don't care much for any history, on a lot of these worlds, it is going to create insurgents by the raftload...and Hanse was studying the Soviet way of war...Some good reading might be the Partisan war from 1941-44 and "the war of the rails" in the German rear. Things will begin to get very, very brutal indeed...and the Clan indoctrination sweeps will begin to resemble German anti-Partisan operations...and all of the evils that that engendered.
Ah. I don't have Warriors, and can't seem to find a copy online: 'Mechwarrior's Guide to the Clans' is a bit truncated, from what I can tell. Although I took a lot of my own info from 'Operation KLONDYKE' and 'Golden Century', so yeah, Little Nicky killed and tortured a lot of people in order to get his little lab experiment going, and those techniques aren't going to go over well in the Inner Sphere, especially in Lyran space (as long as the canon authors aren't involved, as they believe that IS citizens grab Clan culture with both hands as being somehow innately superior and preferable to, you know, free will and self determination, two-way feudal loyalty and basic human rights).

snakespinner

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #24 on: 30 October 2015, 03:57:40 »
The first world they were given was Waldorf.
I wonder if that was the Rusty Vipers capital.
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drakensis

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #25 on: 30 October 2015, 05:36:59 »
BTW, what the heck was the Steel Viper OZ Capital?)
It's Waldorf (see page 24 of Era Report 3062)

"Driving hard, the Falcons eventually pushed the Vipers’ to their capital of Waldorff, where the leadership of both Clans fought a desperate battle in and around the desolate city of Daemon."
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panzerfaust150

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #26 on: 03 November 2015, 16:30:34 »
June 18th, 3054
Offices of the First Prince Emeritus
Castle Davion
New Avalon
Federated Commonwealth


  Spring had finally come to New Avalon, and the day had been nothing short of gorgeous. Hanse had asked the palace staff to leave the windows open while he was awake, as the breeze had simply been refreshing, reminiscent of such breezes from his youth when New Avalon entered spring.Who knew how many springs I still have? Hell, after I drop this little bomb on my guest, his answer may save or doom us, but we need him..dammit. But I hate putting the potential future of the Commonwealth in the hands of someone like him.
 
 The wargames to test the plan had begun in earnest, and there had been a few flaws found in the plan. The main one was one that Hanse had expected would be found- transportation. There just wasn’t enough transport assets to move the forces required, let alone keep them supplied for when everything kicked off. But there wasn’t any source to get Jumpships from…or at least there was..until an offer came from left field..one Hanse had certainly not been expecting.
 
Quintus had been approached by someone purporting to be a personal representative of the Precentor Martial himself. Hanse did not know what to make of it, but figured why not meet with the Precentor, the worst he could say was no. Yeah, I know, Victor SHOULD be doing this, but my unique position allows him to disavow me as a “crazy old man”. If things go wrong..

There was a sharp rap at the door, it was a series of staccato bangs, like rifle fire. I guess the sound is appropriate. “Enter!” Hanse bellowed.

The door opened to reveal a withered figure cloaked in a white robe marked with the golden sigil of ComStar. His bespectacled eyes burned with a warrior’s fire, and his visage was unmistakable as the victor of Tukayyid. “Victor of the Clans”, Anastasius Focht.

Hanse smiled a seemingly genuine smile, one he knew was not going to fool his guest, but certain social graces had to be maintained. “Precentor Martial, I am sorry for the short time allowed to answer my request for a visit, but circumstances did not allow for more warning.”

“Spare me your pleasantries, Hanse Davion. Did you know there is a saying in the Capellan Confederation? ‘Beware of smiling Davions.’ So, Prince Davion, it seems you have a little plan to take the war to the Clans, one that is at the least, quite ambitious." Focht's tone and smile betrayed more mirth than the statement suggested.

Dammit, how in the hell did he know that? I see ROM has its usual impeccable sources...time to go on the offensive I suppose.

“Precentor Marital, I will not deny there is the planning for such an operation. Where you found out, has me at a loss. I suppose ROM is as good as ever." Hanse smiled.

Focht straightened his robes. "Prince Davion, I know you know who I really am, and I appreciate your family's discretion. You do understand this is exactly the kind of thing that is going to make the truce a dead letter?"

Hanse Davion looked Focht in the eye. "Do you trust all the Clans to keep the truce forever?"

Focht shrugged. "If it were simply up to Ulric Kerensky, yes. But it isn't. Somebody on the Clan side will break the truce sooner rather than later, and you are correct to hit first. As much as it pains me to say it."

Hanse knew that all this had done was put Focht on the defensive. But he was a warrior, and if Hanse did not act quickly, he would act to retake the initiative in this argument. Best to end this quickly. Hanse reached into a non-descript AFFS mapcase, it had been his own for many, many years during his time with the 3rd Guards. He deftly produced two blue manila folders. One had the words “Clover Spear- Target List” stamped on it and the other had “Clover Spear- Transport Requirements” stamped on it. Both were also stamped “Most Secret” with a sticker reminding everyone what the penalties for revealing the contents to anyone not cleared to know them were.

Focht took one folder and read through it, then the other...he grunted as he read, and smiled at parts of what he read, lines of mirth creasing his craggy face. He then put down the folder and smiled "Hanse Davion, if you ever want to get the hell out of this gilded cage, I have a job offer waiting."

"I would...except my wife would track me down...and put me in a real cage...and we both know it."

Both men shared a laugh that lasted until Hanse had a minor coughing fit.

Hanse Davion began “I require the use of ComStar’s transportation network for a year, as much of it as you can spare, without shorting your other obligations..or more correctly, the Federated Commonwealth does.”

“And why am I not meeting with Victor, why instead do I meet with you? Are you telling me you don’t trust your own son and heir?”

“On the contrary, I do. But he plays by the new rules, I don’t, and neither did you. I wanted to get the measure of you, Frederick Steiner, have you turned over a new leaf? Are you a new man?” Hanse asked, with a cocked eyebrow.

Focht shook his head, “None has called me by that name in 25 years. I hope you know I no longer covet the throne. I had that burned out of me on Dromini VI, Your mother in law left me to die. I assured her I wasn’t coming back, I was not going to be a party to craven murder. But as it was, I was fortunate that I got off as lucky as I did. I vowed never to get into politics again. As you can see, it almost killed me. But I see even though I leave politics, it does not leave me. You will get my cooperation, and the Primus’s, for your jumpships. I just hope it is enough. All I ask are two things.”

“They are?” Hanse queried

“First, you allow me to send limited numbers of ComStar personnel with the invasion forces to get the HPGs up and running again. I promise, no ROM, and no ‘Mechs. Second, you finish the damn job.” Focht said with an edge.

Hanse smiled a dangerous smile “Agreed to the first point, as for the second, we must win, Precentor Martial, or we are all done for, all of us, for the Clans do not strike me as a merciful people, Precentor Martial.  And with that,” as Hanse rose and motioned towards the door “have a nice trip back to Terra. May I suggest you try Kepperings while on New Avalon before you go? They have an excellent surf and turf meal.”

Focht made as to leave, but turned and looked at Hanse Davion, his eyes bored into him “You are going to die like you lived, Hanse Davion. Your death will be as the result of politics. It would be a shame for you to end up like that..but retirement, she doesn't suit you. Ask Victor to give you a damn job, you old fool!”

“No, Focht, no, I cannot do that and you know why. I made a promise to Melissa. Whatever happens after this, I hang up the spurs.” Hanse said evenly.

Focht shook his head angrily. “Hanse Adrian Davion. Your one true destiny is that of a soldier. Your son is one as well. Politics only suits you insofar as you had to use it. I look forward to your humbling of the Jade Falcons.”

Focht left with a twirl of his robes and a martial stomp in his step. He still stomps off like Frederick did..hasn’t changed a damn bit.

Hanse sat down on the couch in his office with a thump. That little exchange had been pleasant, but tiring. But it was necessary. He was not going to leave the Clans to be his son’s problem. I am sure Victor could handle it, of that I have no doubt, he has matured a lot since becoming First Prince, but he has a blind spot when it comes to the Capellans, filial piety will be my son’s undoing.

His reverie was interrupted by another knock at the door “Your highness, you daughter Katherine is here, she isn’t on the calendar, but-“

“My daughter needs to be on some calendar? Are you mad, let her in.”

Sometimes, I wonder about my staff, I think they edit my visitation requests so as not to ‘upset’ me. Hanse exhaled in mild frustration. At this rate, it was probably likely they would give him a heart attack through the sheer minor frustrations they were putting him through.

“Let her in, for god’s sake she is my daughter! And never bar family members again!”

“Yes, your highness!”

Katherine entered Hanse’s office with a quizzical look on her porcelain face. She took after he mother, with fine, Germanic features topped with long blond hair she kept medium length, though, unlike her mother and father, her hair was curly, She may get that from her uncle Ian. Hanse mused. She had the blond eyes of both the Davions and the Steiners, but unlike most of them, hers had pronounced gold flecks. Her red, white and blue sundress, inspired by the colors of the Davion Guards, whom she had just returned from visiting (and had turned down more than a few ribald marriage proposals from), billowed in the evening breeze.

“Father, I amost got run down by Anastasius Focht and his entourage, and he looked like Aunt Yvonne when she has a plan on her mind, are we going to be interdicted again?”

Hanse laughed, “No Katherine, my dear, it seems the Precentor Martial and I had a meeting and came to understand a great many things…all of them good.”

Katherine shook her head “Dad, your heart, you can’t keep acting like you’re First Prince, or a ‘Mechwarrior anymore. I worry about you, and this may sound selfish, but I need my dad to give me away at my wedding.” Katherine stated with mock forcefulness, she wasn’t really angry at her father, as she had always been a bit of a “daddy’s girl”.

It had been her father that had noticed the early signs of Dombrowski A in his daughter, and the road had been hard, and long, with many long hours of treatment at NAIS, but it had left Katherine a bit shy and unable to relate to people easily. She was now coming out of her shell, but it was a painful process. Her “time” in the AFFC was working in a PIO shop here on New Avalon, and she had done well, even giving a few briefings, where a beaming Hanse had proclaimed “that’s my girl” to a crowd of slightly bemused members of the media.  Hanse loved all of his children fiercely, but he was closest to his two oldest.

“Dammit Katherine, this is a guilded cage, I know it’s well meant, but now that I have something to do, it feels wonderful.”

“If it doesn’t kill you? And incidentally, shouldn’t you have left this to Victor? You did give him the keys to the kingdom a while ago?” Katherine intoned, her tone expressing not a little bit of concern.

Hanse chuckled “I hear you, and obey, my daughter, but I had my reasons, now, what is this I hear about walking you down the aisle and marriage? Is there a young man I need to have DMI scare the hell out of? Not like I can do that sort of thing anymore.”

Katherine groaned “Um, dad, that dance at NAIS, it was real fun you making a show of showing my date your Battlemaster…and what it did to unarmored infantrymen…”

“Noone breaks my little girl’s heart…whatever happened to him, anyhow? I liked him.”

“He enlisted, we broke up, he’s on the Clan front somewhere as an Aerospace pilot.”

“So…back to the question, my daughter..Who has got you talking to me in hypotheticals about your nuptials?…It isn’t like your dear brother is in a hurry.” Hanse shook his head at that last thought, Victor must marry once I do pass on, and the Commonwealth cannot be without a secure future, not for a moment!

“Well, I noticed him…not sure he notices me…his initials are…G and C.” Katherine’s smile was electric, and could melt hearts at 100 meters. The trouble was, the after effects of the treatment had left her not smiling very often. Hence the small talk. Hanse had made it a point to always get Katherine to loosen up around him, and everyone else. Formality may have its uses, but social lubricant is not one of them.

“Katherine, first, sit down, you make me nervous when you stand and talk to me, and any minute now, I think you’re going to begin to pace again.”

Katherine sat down in a very precise and lady-like manner. She smiled at her father and took his hand in hers as they sat across from her, him on the couch, and her in an overstuffed setee, “Dad, you know I’m probably going to get married before Victor ever will. First, he is married to his job…and second? He is pining after the one girl he can’t have. “

Omi Kurita…Jesus, can it ever be more of a cosmic joke that my firstborn son falls in love with the daughter of the mortal enemy of the Commonwealth…though with the Clans, the Combine has taken more than a few steps back in that department..Still…

“Dare I ask, but have you tried fixing your brother up?”

Katherine rolled her eyes “Mom has, I have, Galen has, Kai has..It’s been a bit of a fiasco. And now, now with that plan of yours, he has been putting 10-12 hour days because he wants to validate the plan.”

Hanse smiled a thin smile of pride warring with concern. “Katherine, sadly, he gets that from me. I agree with the idea, but do me a favor? Make sure he eats and takes care of himself. That kind of thing is what had my ticker give out.”

“Received and understood, Dad, I have got half the palace working for me keeping Victor human…or human-ish... Dad, not to switch the subject, but you know we still haven’t found a way around the jumpship issue?  The troop movements across the Commonwealth and supporting logistics are well, ruinous to the economy with the Jumpship numbers. We’ll be in a full-blown depression inside of a year.”

Hanse produced a device from his pocket, and smiled as he thumbed it on, and placed it on a nearby coffee table. “Katherine, what I am about to tell you must be kept close at hand, you can tell Victor, but OPSEC is a factor here. It has to do with my meeting with the Precentor Martial, and why I met with him instead of Victor. And why I need you to tell your brother.”

Katherine looked on quizzically. “Um, Dad, does this have anything to do with the Precentor Martial storming out of here like an Atlas on fire?”

Hanse nodded “It does, we have secured the use of some of ComStar’s Jumpship fleet for a year. Focht is probably in a hurry to cut the appropriate orders at the New Avalon HPG.”

Katherine’s face lit up. “Dad, they will be just enough to keep the economy running, but why am I the one to tell Victor?”

Hanse tapped Katherine’s knee, “Because sweetheart, Victor never really knew firsthand what it was like to deal with the old ComStar. I did. Yes, what I did can be seen as undercutting his authority. It will not occur again. I just wanted to make sure I got the measure of the man- “

“-and make sure he didn’t take big brother for a ride.” Katherine finished.

“Precisely, I am sure of Focht now, and I think he and Mori will turn ComStar around. Will certain parties give him the time? I doubt it. But you need to do something. You know my favorite mapcase?”

Katherine nodded.

“There is a folder there with a list of our remaining intelligence assets in the Free Worlds League, if things begin to go south for ComStar, I want Victor to have a list of those assets at his fingertips and not have to ask the Intelligence Secretariat to pull the information. It will take valuable time he will not have. I am sure Victor will know what orders to give..but I want you to hold on to that folder. Just in case.”

Katherine smiled “Just in case we have to start potting Blakists from rooftops?”

Hanse nodded.

“Consider it done, Daddy. He always protected me when we were younger, even when I did not deserve it…especially when I didn’t. I can have his back for this."

Hanse’s heart broke at that last statement, Katherine, my beloved daughter. You always deserved better. The illness, it was not your fault. You paid a high price for your mental health. The occasional crying fits that surface today, the insomnia, the two years of seizures. And above all, the painful shyness. Oh my daughter, I do hope the cure was worth it. Now, now I start another war to make sure you have a future better than the one I had. Maybe a peaceful one, dare I hope.

___________________________________________________________
..Whatever my differences between my brother and I, I always loved him for being that big brother who protected me growing up, and was there during the worst of the Dombrowski A treatment. I remember after one bad day at NAIS when I had passed out during the electroshock, my mother was screaming at dad, and Dad sat and took it..they both loved me, and both were angry, in their own way at what fate had thrown at their eldest daughter. Mom, Mom lost her temper, in one of the few times I have ever seen her do it..Dad, dad, was stoic, and was a statue when Mom began to pound him with her fists…and that’s when I heard Victor come into the room, and say to both of them “Stop it, Katherine can hear, and she needs us.” I was never more proud of my big brother.

So, when Dad and I had that talk that fateful day of June, 3054, I realized I had to be the little sister he deserved. I had to be strong…


It’s Not All Fairy Tales – The Life and Times of a Cracked Princess, by Katherine Cox-Steiner Davion, Tharkad Press, Tharkad, 3084
« Last Edit: 05 November 2015, 11:52:52 by panzerfaust150 »
Quote from: HABEAS
Now now. The C-bill stops here. Everything in BattleTech is my fault.

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Chris OFarrell

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #27 on: 03 November 2015, 17:40:44 »
Hmmm, not sure I buy this plot twist.

Firstly, I think you're rather overstating the Jumpship problem by a significant degree. Presuming the FedCom can stage its RCTs in close in bulk (not an unreasonable assumption) and presuming they leave most of their infantry behind, at least in the initial waves (its not like they are landing on hostile planets, said planets will surely cheer in the AFFC in as 'about damned time!' liberators) to free up collar space for Mechs, Tanks, Arty and Aerospace; the AFFC should have more than enough organic shipping capacity to slam into the Clan OZs without even really needing to tap civilian jump-ships that much. While still holding the force ratios and strategic/tactical mass Hanse is looking for. Especially given the relatively confined operational area and limited number of targets.

But that aside, blackmailing Focht for Jumpships seems a really REALLY risky way to go about things.

First, simply asking nicely would have probably gotten the AFFC the support it needed! ComStar was trying very hard with Focht's pushing to get the Inner Sphere really focusing on the Clans and building up to what eventually became Bulldog anyway. Go to them and say that you need some Jumpship support to kick the Falcons and Vipers out and there is a pretty good chance they would have happily helped out. Fochts hostility here towards Hanse was also rather odd, he never had any kind of personal beef with him as far as I recall.
And not to mention threatening to empower WOB is just crazy, that should be a HUGE deterrent against weakening the reformers of ComStar who are trying to drag the order into what it actually says it publicly is as opposed to a 'WE SHALL RULE THE INNER SPHERE, BLESSED BE BLAKE!' cult of doom that the WOB want to be! Discredit Focht and Mori and you'll probably have WOB puppets in the door in a heartbeat at this point, then the WOB controlling the entire damn place from behind the scenes, even as they publicly 'feud' with each other.

Second, the hand Hanse has to play here is weak. Very very weak. No-one is going to care that Freddy plotted against the Archon back in the day, especially after its point out that he went on a suicide mission to redeem himself and was very nearly executed by Theodore in a rage after the fact, arguably saving the Lyran Commonwealth from a very nasty sucker punch in the 4th war. That kind of statue is going to be very hard to drag down (and Hanse doing so could inflame Lyran sentiments at the worst possible time!). And then add to that the fact that he and his ComGuards pretty much stopped the Clan Invasion dead cold, giving him a whole new reputation across the Inner Sphere including the FedCom ... trying to paint him now as a traitor? That's the kind of bluff that could be very easily called IMHO.
Best you might be able to do is link him as the head of ROM to the brutal LIC+MIIO+DMI vs ROM shadow war between the 3030s and 3050s (although frankly in my head canon he NEVER had that post, ever, it makes absoloutly no sense that he would take it or Myndo would offer it to him!). But even that is weak...

Third, ROM sure as hell didn't know that Mori was an OP5 agent. If they did, she would have been executed on the spot after all. So I'm not sure how Hanse got that little bit of data. MIIO might have her on their list of suspects of people who leaked Scorpion to Theodore (makes sense; she was from the DC and was a close confidant of Primus McCrazy who has under the new ComStar thrived as Primus, but its hardly proof) but its hard to see where Hanse would get it from. Its clearly a very well kept secret.

Forth and final, even if Hanse wants it, there is no way he could get access to the entire ComStar jumpship fleet. IIRC after the Lyrans, they have the largest Jumpship merchant fleet in the Inner Sphere, its a big money maker for them along with their HPGs hiring them out. They surely keep a reserve for the ComGuards of course, but its not like they can just hand it all over and not have massive consequences to play with as they'll have obligations to all the Successor States to meet, megacorps and Mercs and others.


I've really been interested in this story, but this chapter really broke by SOD quite a bit I must say. The characters seem well out of wack, not to mention Hanse undermining Victor by acting in matters of state policy for the FedSuns with another major power like this behind his back!
« Last Edit: 03 November 2015, 17:49:57 by Chris OFarrell »
"I, the Baron of Strang, care not for your new names. Clans? Jade Falcons? I call you by your true name: Scum of the Star League, traitors of free will, persecutors of the Periphery come back to lord it over freedom-loving people. Come ahead, you steel-eyed robots! Come ahead and taste what a million like-minded people think of you and your damn Clans!"

-Baron Stepan Von Strang

panzerfaust150

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #28 on: 03 November 2015, 17:52:44 »
Chris...
 You make some good points...darn you! I may have written myself into a bit of a corner. I guess I could rewrite this chapter. It was fun to have the Ruthless Side of HanseTM come out to play, but yeah, the points you make are very, very good and very hard to ignore. I think I can come up with an alternate chapter within 24 hours or so. Probably less...you live, you learn.
Quote from: HABEAS
Now now. The C-bill stops here. Everything in BattleTech is my fault.

I AM BATTLETECH!

Chris OFarrell

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Re: Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War
« Reply #29 on: 03 November 2015, 18:14:47 »
Don't get me wrong, till now this story has been fantastic and I've been really enjoying it (as in I really haven't HAD any commentary to make or criticism to offer). Hanse taking the kid gloves off against the Clans and doing a 'Welcome to the Inner Sphere! This is how we fight wars here children' to the birdbrains is just great - and I can even see him having plenty of perfectly justified rage to work out on ComStar...just needs some tweeks IMO.

And Katherine's bit in this was also a lot of fun, damnit I'm actually starting to like her, crazy as it sounds...
« Last Edit: 04 November 2015, 04:44:14 by Chris OFarrell »
"I, the Baron of Strang, care not for your new names. Clans? Jade Falcons? I call you by your true name: Scum of the Star League, traitors of free will, persecutors of the Periphery come back to lord it over freedom-loving people. Come ahead, you steel-eyed robots! Come ahead and taste what a million like-minded people think of you and your damn Clans!"

-Baron Stepan Von Strang