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Author Topic: Victor Victorious (Redux)  (Read 4133 times)

Hominid Mk II

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Victor Victorious (Redux)
« on: 11 July 2019, 12:12:28 »
I’ve made some changes and additions to this timeline in order to take into account information about what the canon timeline knows as the Dark Age era that I didn’t have access to before the publication of Era Report: 3145, Field Manual: 3145 and Historical: Wars of the Republic Era (because I didn’t read any of the MW: DA novels). I’ve also incorporated some ideas I got from the feedback from people who commented on the last version, some years ago now. (Thanks, all!) There's a significant addition at thr very beginning, significant changes in 3065 and 3079, and a significant addition to 3079, but then nothing much before the 3110s and the 3130s.

 - - - - - -

The Early 3040s

As the last stages of the amalgamation of the Federated Suns and Lyran Commonwealth into the Federated Commonwealth are being completed, it suddenly occurs to some anonymous official involved in the process that existing plans to show the entire FedCom coloured Davion gold on future star maps may not be a good idea: it could be interpreted as symbolically suggesting that the FS has simply absorbed the LC completely, rather than forging a partnership of true equals with them. He shares his concerns with his superiors and a number of them come to agree with him. They pass their concerns on to their own superiors in turn, and so on until a decision is made at the highest levels that this is a cause for real concern and that therefore a rethink is needed.

Eventually the decision is taken that future star maps will instead show the FedCom with the Lyran Commonwealth State Command in Steiner blue and the Federated Suns State Command in Davion gold, but with the two colours symbolically flowing into each other on an equal basis at the boundary between the Skye and Sarna Marches. (As you can see them doing in the cut-out section of a customized Star Map that I use as my personalized avatar graphic when posting here on these forums.)

No-one realizes in advance just how significant this decision will prove to be in the long term: it will have the effect of reducing the degree to which militant Lyran nationalists will be able to win others over to their cause, simply because they can't make use of a star map showing the entire FedCom in Davion gold and with Steiner blue seemingly gone forever as a simple but effective weapon in their ongoing propaganda campaign to stoke up sentiment against the continued existence of the FedCom. For many years to come, the average number of Lyrans voting in favour of dissolving the FedCom in media surveys and opinion polls will usually be several percentage points lower than it would have been in the same timeframe in the canon timeline.


Late 3054 or early 3055

Katherine Steiner-Davion has approached Ryan Steiner to sound him out about entering into a conspiracy with her to assassinate her mother. He decides it’s some kind of attempt at entrapment and sends her away with her ears ringing. But once she’s gone he decides that he now not only wants her mother gone but her as well… something about the whole thing has left him with an uneasy feeling that she could be very dangerous to him, whatever her game was.


3055

Archon Melissa Steiner-Davion goes to an official banquet and takes her daughter along, since Katherine (or Katrina as she’s started asking people to call her lately) rarely misses a party. Both are among the many killed when a bomb supposedly planted by a deranged florist goes off.

[The preceding assumes that when Victoria Parrdeau implied that Katherine was framed for a part in the murder of her mother by the WoB, she was merely spreading disinformation for some reason. If she really was telling the truth, then Katherine deciding on a whim to attend the banquet instead of passing on it and thereby inadvertantly getting herself killed as well means that all the effort already put into framing her for the crime has now gone to waste. If Agent Curaitis really was a double agent for the WoB, he’d probably carry out some damage control by arranging to have the falsified evidence implicating her supressed, in order to avoid having anybody start asking the obvious question of why Katherine would accompany her mother to an official function when she knew she was being targeted by an assassin and that this would be a good opportunity for him to strike, which might start their minds along a train of thought leading to the conclusion that somebody was planting false information. The blame would then be put on Ryan Steiner alone instead.]

Victor Steiner-Davion travels to Tharkad as fast as a JumpShip command circuit can carry him. With no-one else of suitable stature available to preside, the funerals of his mother and sister have to wait for his arrival and when they do take place the public is impressed by the grieving devotion he shows at the ceremony. His popularity climbs as he rides a wave of public sympathy. (Conspiracy theories blaming him for the assassination will never go on to become widespread here.)


3056

The abortive Skye Rebellion and the elimination of Ryan Steiner come and go largely unchanged.


3057

Ulric Kerensky is still indicted on trumped-up charges of genocide, sparking the Refusal War.

The death of Joshua Marik and the uncovering of the attempt to substitute a double for him occur unchanged. Operation Guerrero is launched. Although the FedCom public is rather shocked by the duplicity Victor showed in authorizing the affair, the fact that his father had been the one to organize it, and his explanation that he only continued with it because he wanted to ensure that the supply of refit kits to the AFFC from FWL factories kept coming, lead most of them to forgive him out of lingering sympathy over his loss of his mother and sister. Both halves of the FedCom will play a full part in resisting the FWL-CC invasion.

Initially everything goes well for Thomas and Sun-Tzu. As in the canon timeline, much of the Terran Corridor falls to the FWLM and much of the Sarna March falls to the CCAF. But here, although the AFFC is still caught totally unprepared, traditionally Lyran units aren’t being withdrawn from the Sarna March en masse and its potential defensive capabilities are significantly greater than in the canon timeline. Eventually the FWLM-CCAF offensive stalls as the AFFC starts to recover from its initial surprise and confusion and fight back effectively.

The Refusal War still ends with the deaths of Ulric Kerensky, Natasha Kerensky, Vandervahn Chistu and Elias Crichell and the sundering of the Wolves into Crusaders in the Occupation Zone and Wardens in exile on Arc-Royal.


3058

Although there’s no Chaos March in existence as such to provide lucrative employment opportunities for mercs, the CC is still offering good money for frontline service in its ongoing campaign to reconquer the Sarna March. Brion’s Legion still decide not to renew their contract with ComStar, prompting the latter to hire the 21st Centauri Lancers in their place. In short order Operation Odysseus still occurs and the WoB still retake Terra from ComStar.

As the FedCom readies itself to launch a full-scale counter-offensive against the FWL and CC, Victor learns that Thomas Marik is a ringer. Victor asks Thomas to meet him at a JumpShip rendezvous in an uninhabited star system (effectively neutral territory) to discuss peace. When they’re alone he reveals what he knows and threatens Thomas with exposure unless he agrees to a cease-fire and a FWL withdrawal behind their previous borders. The stunned Thomas has little choice but to agree. To sweeten the pill, Victor states his wish to have the deal announced in a joint communiqué to the public which makes it look as though the deal was reached amicably after the clearing up of tragic misunderstandings on both sides and that no-one is losing face by it. Victor also returns Joshua’s body to Thomas with full honours.

Sun-Tzu is apoplectic with rage at his "betrayal" by Thomas. He correctly guesses that Victor used some kind of secret leverage to obtain this result and dearly wishes he knew what it was so he could use it too. He also begins to worry that Victor may be craftier than he previously gave him credit for. His engagement to Isis Marik may well unravel here and now rather than dragging on for several more years.

Thomas agonizes over whether or not to inform the Master of the Word of Blake that his imposture has been discovered and eventually decides against it. He’s already got enough troubles – the leaders of the Silver Hawks Coalition are screaming blue murder about the withdrawal of support for their efforts to reclaim their lost worlds of Callison and Marcus and the leaders-in-exile of the former Sirian Concordance and Border Protectorate have likewise had their hopes of being restored to their own lost domains dashed. The leaders of Zion and Ohren Provinces are also furious and the Regulans and Anduriens are prominent among the many others joining in with the chorus of outrage out of political opportunism. The Sirian Lancers and Protectorate Guards regiments are so incensed that, remembering what the Northwind Highlanders did in the Fourth Succession War, they make contact with Victor and offer to defect to the FedCom in return for being made the permanent garrison forces on their homeworlds. Unsurprisingly, their offer is accepted.

Another important development (or, more accurately, non-development) is that neither Wolf's Dragoons nor the Northwind Highlanders ever declare themselves independent of the FedCom: without the secession of the Lyran Alliance and without the Sarna March collapsing into the Chaos March, that's just not anything like as thinkable a course of action for them (or for anybody else) to take. And it just wasn't possible for the covert operations by the CC aimed at inciting disaffection towards the FedCom among the Highlanders to be so successful as in the canon timeline either.

In the aftermath of this debacle, Thomas has to go through the tortuous experience of addressing a furious Parliament to apologize for – he claims – having gone to war out of grief over the death of his son and rage at the deception over his death, against the better judgement of his inner voice of reason which told him all along that bloodshed wasn’t the answer. Since he has no real alternative if he’s to attempt to preserve at least some appearance of consistency, he repeats his previous claim that his personal negotiations with Victor convinced him that Victor sincerely desired peaceful coexistence (with Thomas now laying the blame for the deception solely at the door of the late Hanse Davion instead) and that he finally realized it had been a mistake all along for him to go to war. His "frank admission of error" and his "heartfelt plea for forgiveness" earn him some respect and support from the ideological pacifists in Parliament, while others have sympathy for him because of his recent bereavement. He also still has the support of people like Christopher Halas, who’ve already nailed their colours to his mast so firmly that they now have no real option other than to stick with him regardless. But the general consensus is that at the very least Thomas has demonstrated a worrying capacity for allowing his judgement to be clouded by emotion, which has led him to needlessly provoke renewed division at home while making the FWL look weak in the eyes of the rest of the Inner Sphere. In the end he narrowly survives in office only because, as before, the likely alternative to him is the disintegration of the FWL. Even that might not have been enough if not for the fact that he’d only deployed mercs rather than regular units, so that no League citizens have lost their lives for nothing in the way many hired guns just have. FWLM contract negotiators on Outreach and Galatea are likely to have some problems getting their job done for a while….

Thomas is left understandably embittered by all this. He considers meddling in Skye (to support the abortive revolt by Field Marshal Brandel Gareth) out of spite, but finally decides he can’t risk it. He’s only just finished publicly harping on at length about his supposed conviction that peace is the only way, so he can’t risk being seen to promote strife now. And he can’t be seen to try to undermine Victor when he’s just publicly exonerated him of all blame over the doppelganger affair. He does, however, still sell the contracts of many of his mercs on to Sun-Tzu, justifying this when questioned on the grounds that he reluctantly feels an obligation to try to make amends for his seeming abandonment of a "valued ally". The Zion and Ohren provincial leaders also launch a sustained raiding campaign in defiance of Thomas, in order to tie down AFFC units and leave the FedCom as thinly stretched as possible, allowing them to indulge in a little spite by helping Sun-Tzu out. But even with their support and with the extra mercs and his fanatical Warrior Houses at his disposal, there’s a limit to what Sun-Tzu can realistically accomplish. By now the AFFC has managed to halt the CCAF advance completely and all attempts to renew it have failed. Sun-Tzu has managed to retake the worlds of Lesalles, Campertown, Tsinghai, Chamdo, Raballa, Bora, Sarmaxa, Sarna, Quemoy, Ulan Bator, Old Kentucky, Wazan, Phact, Corey, Elnath, Yunnah, Second Try and Palos, but there seems little prospect of any further gains.

Just as Victor is finally ready to launch a major counter-offensive, the Jade Falcons invade Steiner space. Victor immediately switches his attention back to them and Sun-Tzu is given the opportunity to reinforce and fortify his gains.

Setting much store by controlling the world of Sarna itself once again, the CC ostentatiously proclaims the restoration of the Sarna Commonality. The FedCom quietly changes the name of the Sarna March to the Tikonov March.

The Com Guards send Victor some help to fight the Jade Falcons unasked, as in turn do the DC (the latter partly out of the high regard Theodore Kurita has for him and partly in order to score a few points with domestic public opinion by making it seem that the mighty FedCom needs their help). Victor and Anastasius Focht are inspired by this multinational cooperation to come up with the idea of re-creating the Star League.

With everything else that's happening in this eventful year to occupy people's attention, it's not really surprising that nobody happens to be watching the right place at the right time to see the arrival in the Richmond system of a time-displaced Star League WarShip, the Aegis-class SLS Manassas. Its crew make contact with a mercenary covert operations force working for the ComStar Explorer Corps who clue them in on everything that's happened in the Inner Sphere in the 274 years they've been away. After protracted argument, the crew decide to go into business for themselves as mercenaries, calling themselves the Lionhearts. They offer their services to the FedCom, which they see as the most powerful and wealthy faction and therefore the one that can afford to pay them the most money. Unsurprisingly, Victor accepts their offer.

Theodore still survives an attempted putsch by the Black Dragon Society.

Sun-Tzu begins canvassing everyone except Victor to get the job of the first First Lord of the Second Star League. Thomas sees the logic of the Second League but fears that Victor is likely to get the job and then blackmail him into meekly going along with everything he says, giving Victor far too much power considering he already has the goodwill of the DC and the loyal support of the SIC. He therefore backs Sun-Tzu, arguing in the negotiations that Victor must show his good faith by supporting the candidacy of the leader of the weakest Great House in the Inner Sphere in order to show that the Second League won’t merely be a joint front for the two strongest – the FedCom and the DC. Thomas half-expects that Victor will furiously refuse and seem to be behaving so unreasonably that Thomas will be able to pull out of the negotiations without incurring the wrath of the DC, ending the idea of the Second League with Victor getting the blame. However, after getting over his initial shock and disdain and calming down enough to consider the idea rationally, Victor surprises Thomas and stuns Sun-Tzu by agreeing. Thomas now has no excuse to refuse to sign up and in any case he’s starting to think about reconsidering his opinion of Victor. The Second Star League is duly created.


3059-60

Operation Bulldog, Operation Bird Dog and Operation Serpent proceed largely unchanged. The Smoke Jaguars are still Annihilated. The Nova Cats still defect to the Inner Sphere and get Abjured. The Ghost Bears still abandon most of their holdings in Clan Space and relocate their population to their holdings in the Inner Sphere.

With the FedCom still united under the regency of Yvonne Steiner-Davion and protective of its loyal ally the St. Ives Compact, Sun-Tzu decides after much deliberation and with the deepest reluctance that he can’t risk orchestrating events to spark another war in a bid to reconquer the SIC. He glumly restricts himself to further fortifying the restored Sarna Commonality and pursuing closer ties with the Canopians and Taurians. (Xin Sheng will remain all talk and no real action for some time yet.) Although he doesn’t have a military emergency to cite as justification for not attending the Detroit Summit, he can easily come up with some other convincing excuse. Emma Centrella and Jeffrey Calderon are still taken hostage by Sherman Maltin and Jeffrey is still conveniently killed in the crossfire during an armed rescue. The way is cleared for Grover Shraplen to become Protector of the TC and commit his nation to membership of the Trinity Alliance.


3061

Victor returns from Clan Space a conquering hero. He’s the obvious choice to be elected the second First Lord of the Second Star League and this duly happens. Victor feels that after all his recent triumphs he doesn’t want to be seen as a pathological warmonger and need hardly fear being seen as weak, so rather than start another war he reluctantly decides he’ll let Sun-Tzu keep his gains from a few years before – but doesn’t relieve his anxieties by telling him so, preferring to keep him too preoccupied to be thinking of getting into any more mischief. The Tikonov March is still under tight FedCom control, but the wave of Liaoist terrorism and Capellan nationalist sentiment that swept what had then been the Sarna March beginning in 3057 still hasn’t died down completely and shows no sign of doing so. Victor begins to ponder what he can do to deal with this problem and finds himself thinking about what Theodore did in 3034 when he was faced with a similar problem in the Rasalhague Military District….

Meanwhile, Anastasius Focht still retires and Gavin Dow then becomes Precentor Martial of ComStar, owing to the lack of any obvious alternative. Focht inwardly resigns himself to having to be ready to act as a "backseat driver" at short notice because of the lack of real ability demonstrated by Dow, which has the effect of preventing him from becoming so locked into the mindset that "his time is past" and "he can’t contribute anything more" as to render him psychologically incapable of taking an active role again in the event of real need. (This seems to have been what actually did happen to him in the canon timeline if his inactivity during the FedCom Civil War and the Jihad is anything to go by.)


3062-63

Victor marries Omi Kurita. Theodore cranks his propaganda machine into overdrive in an effort to spin this to make it seem acceptable to majority opinion in the DC. (He doesn’t feel too threatened by the Black Dragons at the moment after their recent high-profile failure.)

The Trinity Alliance is still formed.

The Combine-Ghost Bear War still occurs.

Theodore still survives another attempted putsch by the Black Dragon Society, but still loses his wife Tomoe Sakade in the process this time.

Nobody has any obvious reason to seemingly assassinate Arthur Steiner-Davion. Victor has James Sandoval under close surveillance (always a good idea but doubly necessary now that he’s just married Omi!) and uneasy peace persists between the DC and the Draconis March of the FedCom.

The conquest of the Illyrian Palatinate by the Marian Hegemony and the replacement of Caesar Sean O’Reilly by his son Julius occur largely unchanged.

Without the shake-ups in military organization and unit deployment that would have accompanied the secession of an independent Lyran Alliance, fewer mercs are able to find employment in Steiner space in this period than in the canon timeline. A few of the smaller ones who don’t make the final cut eventually end up working for the Rim Collection instead. The raid in force on the latter by Morrison’s Extractors in 3062 faces stronger opposition than Able’s Aces alone could have mounted and turns into a total slaughter. Hopper Morrison himself is killed and the remainder of the band are killed or captured. The worlds of Pain and The Rack are subsequently visited by a follow-up expedition and the last remnants of their rule there are eradicated.


3064

The Jade Falcons have no obvious reason to attack the FedCom again at this time in particular. The Snow Ravens still begin forging ties with the Outworlds Alliance.

Without the distraction of a Civil War in the Federated Commonwealth drawing some of their own forces in to distract them, the Com Guards remain vigilant in maintaining adequate forces in place to defend the Ross 248 (Terrelibre) and Luyten 68-28 systems and the Word of Blake Militia have no opportunity to mount a sneak attack to seize them. They remain securely in Com Guard hands.

Early in the year, Victor stuns the entire Inner Sphere by unveiling his partial solution to the problem of the Liaoist unrest in the Tikonov March. He orders the holding of a plebiscite on the question "Do you want to remain part of the Federated Commonwealth, or become part of the St. Ives Compact?". The vote is overwhelmingly in favour of the latter. Shortly afterwards, the worlds of Zurich, Genoa, Tall Trees, Aldebaran, Menkalinan, Saiph, New Canton, Liao, Ningpo, Gan Singh, Pleione, Poznan, Styk, Shensi, St. Andre, Hunan, Menkar, Jonathan, Foochow, Tsitsang, Shipka, Foot Fall, Highspire, Wei, Zaurak, New Macao, Menkib, Mandate, Sakhalin, Matsu, Remshield, Kaifeng, Heligoland, Truth and Tsingtao are transferred to the control of Candace Liao, becoming part of the SIC as the Wei Commonality. The remainder of the Tikonov March worlds have not been given the option of joining the SIC, since Victor needs to keep them in order to ensure the continued existence and security of the Terran Corridor. Although he personally would have been willing to trust Candace with them, Victor knows that bigoted and/or paranoid hawks across the FedCom would have gone berserk if he’d done so. Thankfully, he has the excuse that they’ve already had their chance to vote on this issue, when the people of the short-lived Tikonov Free Republic chose to abolish it and join the FedCom over three decades before. (This conveniently ignores the fact that the people of the Tikonov Commonality worlds that had been conquered before the creation of the TFR didn’t get to vote.) FedCom troops will still remain on the transferred worlds for the time being, until Candace can get a massive recruitment drive for the SIC Military underway and get some grunts trained up for militia duty. FedCom corporations will also continue to receive preferential treatment in commercial dealings. Since the old and the new halves of her expanded realm are separated by a protruding spur of the CC, her nephew Treyhang Liao is promoted to Mandrinn and appointed to be her regent in the Wei Commonality (the new half) while she isn’t there, while Kai will naturally be her regent in the St. Ives Commonality (the old half). Her scheming brother Tormana is pointedly passed over as belated punishment for his having tried to hold Deidre and David Lear hostage years before.

I’d imagine Sun-Tzu will be chewing his carpet at this point… and I wouldn’t imagine George Hasek will be too thrilled either. Sun-Tzu now has to deal with the fact that his aunt, who was the designated heir to the Capellan Chancellorship before defecting and being replaced by his mother, now controls the ancestral family homeworld. Before, the world of Liao was straightforwardly under enemy occupation – now it’s in the hands of the elder branch of the Liao family again. This strengthens the legitimacy of any claim they may choose to put forward to be the rightful rulers of the CC, while simultaneously weakening his own claim. Meanwhile, Hasek has to face the fact that much of the traditional posturing by his family about the need for the people of the Capellan March to be ever-vigilant and dutifully obedient to them has now been invalidated.

Later in the year, Victor confounds the expectations of many paranoiacs by dutifully stepping down as First Lord once his term expires. Theodore is elected the third First Lord of the Second Star League. The FWL nominates the Word of Blake, who still only control Terra and Gibson (and the Five Hidden Worlds), for provisional membership in the Second Star League.

And while all this is going on, few people outside ComStar and the WoB have any reason to notice or care when Victoria Parrdeau slips on her wet bathroom floor, falls and suffers a fatal head injury in a genuine, honest-to-goodness accident… or when she’s succeeded as Precentor ROM by Elise MacTaggart. But the WoB, of course, are going to care a great deal.

[Hey, if the canon authors can contrive all kinds of lucky breaks for the WoB – in addition to all their masterful intrigues – to make them more dangerous, I can darn well contrive at least one unlucky break to make them less dangerous! So there!  ;)]
« Last Edit: 22 November 2020, 07:22:56 by Hominid Mk II »
Ever felt that The Powers That Were at FASA, WizKids and FanPro never gave Victor Steiner-Davion and the Federated Commonwealth a fair shake in the canon timeline? Then you might be interested in my Victor Victorious AU at

https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=65976.0

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Hominid Mk II

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Re: Victor Victorious (Redux)
« Reply #1 on: 11 July 2019, 12:21:35 »
3065

Seeking to boldly reassert himself as the man Sun-Tzu needs to reckon with and as the leader the people of the Capellan March need, George Hasek fabricates "evidence" of CCAF troop movements which appear to pose a threat to the new territories of the SIC – and immediately launches an obviously pre-planned "pre-emptive" invasion of the major CC worlds of Ares and Necromo and the unimportant and undefended worlds of Capricorn III, New Sagan and Minnacora. Brutal conflict ensues. Since Sun-Tzu has had most of his attention focused on trying to guess what Victor and Candace will do next and being ready to meet any attempt to take back from him the worlds he recently reclaimed, he’s badly wrong-footed by this bold move on the part of a comparative newcomer to the game. He appeals for aid from the Canopians and Taurians, but the Capellan March forces just manage to crush all effective resistance on all five of their objective worlds before these reinforcements can arrive or any of his own troops can be redeployed.

Hasek makes a triumphal entry into the historic city of New Olympia on Ares (where the Ares Conventions were signed centuries before), only to barely escape being killed by a bomb planted by a Maskirovka operative. He’s left comatose in a critical condition and his offensive grinds to a halt as his disoriented subordinates argue about what to do. A number of ugly incidents occur which threaten to erupt into punitive massacres directed against the conquered populations.

At this point Victor intervenes, ordering the Capellan March forces to withdraw immediately and threatening the individual unit commanders with court martial if they delay or procrastinate. Their places are taken by mercs whose contracts Victor has hastily sold on to Candace.

Sun-Tzu now wrestles with the greatest dilemma of his life: should he throw his own forces and those of his Canopian and Taurian allies into the fray to try to regain his lost worlds before the SIC-contracted mercs can fully consolidate their grip on them, or does that run too great a risk of drawing him into an all-out war which the FedCom will certainly enter if Candace looks like losing? In the end, with rage and frustration threatening to choke him, he backs down… for now. (The Capellan people start to wonder at this point if Xin Sheng will ever amount to more than empty rhetoric.)

In the aftermath, the Steiner-Davion and Allard-Liao families rather than the Hasek family are the real net gainers from the conflict. The old and the new territories of the SIC are now linked in a continuous belt stretching from Zurich to Teng, more of their Capellan brothers and sisters have been "liberated from the misrule of Sun-Tzu" and they now have another ‘Mech factory and even a shipyard at their disposal. Best of all, the capture of the Aris Memorial Yards orbiting Necromo came at just the right time to also leave the SIC in possession of the still-incomplete Feng Huang-class WarShips Sundermann Rhys and Ilsa Hyung, which Victor will supply the SIC with the necessary economic and technological assistance to complete within a few years. Meanwhile, the expanded buffer state between the CC and much of the Capellan March that Victor had originally wanted to establish will now serve its intended purpose even more effectively.

But it isn’t all good news for Victor. The old criticism of him as a supposed pathological warmonger gains renewed currency among most people who don’t know the Hasek family very well. And James Sandoval soon starts clamouring for a war to establish a similar buffer state between the DC and the Draconis March… !

Hasek eventually wakes from his coma to find that his bold gamble has accomplished nothing except to make the CC look even less of a real threat than before and therefore to deprive him of any credible excuse for starting another war any time soon.

Sun-Tzu, of course, is the net loser in all this. His only consolation is that while he’s now lost five worlds, he’d previously regained eighteen, which still leaves him with thirteen more than he had when he ascended the Capellan throne. He grimly directs work to begin (with covert WoB assisstance) on massively upgrading and expanding the Rashpur-Owens Inc. shipyards orbiting Capella to make them capable of building additional Feng Huang-class WarShips. Eventually three more (which never existed in the canon timeline) are built: the Androsar, the Laurelli and the Tarlak. Additional orbital facilities are built which will produce Danais, Kuan Ti, Overlord and Union-class DropShips, replacing the lost Earthwerks, Ltd. facilities at Ares.

Meanwhile, nobody has hired the "Dancing Joker" to assassinate Omi Kurita. The Black Dragons certainly want her dead, but the nekekami have refused to take the job and they don’t have the necessary foreign connections for making contact with a gaijin assassin in order to hire him. Tancred Sandoval is making no secret of the fact that he’s keeping a watchful eye on his more volatile relatives in case the official surveillance proves inadequate: the likes of his father and his ambitious cousin Aaron are feeling too insecure to risk taking any steps that could result in their execution for high treason if they’re caught.

[An idle aside… so just how does the "Dancing Joker" occupy himself instead in this particular timeframe, I wonder…?]

Meanwhile again, the conspicuous absence of the FedCom Civil War from this timeline means that there’s no sudden upsurge in military procurement to create an appetite for cutting-edge re-workings of veteran ‘Mech designs in the mid-3060s. Giovanni Estrella de la Sangre never quite manages to get his proposed "Project Phoenix" off the ground. The only opportunity for growth that presents itself to Vicore Industries is the squalid secret deal to supply the pirates of the Haven Cluster with the tech needed to build the Brigand. Without the confusion of the Civil War, there’s no opportunity for the WoB to orchestrate an operation to spring "Lady Death" Trevaline from prison and set her up with the means to wage a private war against Davion-controlled space, but they decide that the Haven Cluster alone has enough potential to be worth building up into a greater menace and therefore broker a deal between them and Vicore.

Meanwhile yet again, the absence of the FedCom Civil means that there’s no sudden upsurge in military procurement for ground forces across the Inner Sphere to create a drain on resources in the DC, which in turn means there's no opportunity for anonymous committees of penny-pinching bureaucrats to surruptitiously order the cancellation of work on the Yamato and Kaga-class WarShips. The still-unfinished - and thus far still-unnamed - prototype Yamato-class vessel still being laboriously assembled by New Samarkand Naval Works will finally be given an actual name - the Nagato - and will finally enter active service in 3069. Midway Shipyards will finally get their prototype Kaga-class vessel - the Mount Niitaka - into active service in 3068. This pushes the FedCom to move the Durandel-class destroyer from the drawing board into actual production, with the first two vessels - the Balingore and the Tyrfing - entering service in 3068 and 3070 respectively.


3066

The Fronc Reaches don’t declare themselves independent at this time. Without several years of the MoC and TC having had to pour resources into supporting Sun-Tzu against the SIC, there have been no budget cuts in their subsidies to the New Colony Region to provoke renewed unrest and enough troops are available to be stationed there to keep things uneasily quiet for the time being.

The Marian Hegemony still invades the Circinus Federation and gets a bloody nose for its efforts.

Slightly later than in the canon timeline, the Diamond Sharks find a way to dupe the Jade Falcons into ceding them the Twycross system and thereby giving them control of its HarJel-A deposits.


3067

The FedCom is still united and strong and even Shraplen isn’t quite mad enough to attack it at this time.

The Second Star League is still generally perceived as going strong and although Sun-Tzu would dearly love to pull out by now, he knows that everyone else will vote in favour of a motion of confidence and all that’ll happen is that the CC will then be out in the cold, alone.

The remnant Tikonov March is still quiet and the WoB have had no opportunity to start carving out a Protectorate there. The Allied Mercenary Command has never been created and the WoB have had no cause to start seeing Wolf’s Dragoons or the Northwind Highlanders as particular threats to their ambitions. They therefore have no obvious reason to help Wayne Waco plot the death of Jaime Wolf.

The Gray Death Legion are still going strong and still based on Glengarry.

As the only remaining Great House Lord who hasn’t yet had the opportunity to serve as First Lord, Thomas is the most obvious choice for the job this time round and is duly elected the fourth First Lord of the Second Star League. (Behind the scenes, he’s acutely nervous that Victor will try to blackmail him into using the powers of the First Lordship for something that will benefit Victor in some nefarious way. He’s positively dreading finding out what the Master will start trying to order him to do!)

The WoB are admitted to full membership of the SSL and immediately propose that the Great Houses join them in a great Jihad to be directed against the Clan Occupation Zones and ultimately the Clan Homeworlds as well. They present the restored LCS Invincible to the FedCom as a gift to augment their military strength for this task. (After secretly fitting it with concealed devices operating on the same principle as the long-forgotten Centurion transponders of the First Star League era which will allow them to shut it down by remote control should they ever wish to do so.) Fired with enthusiasm for their great cause, they incautiously drop hints that they envision the necessity of using weapons of mass destruction for the first time in centuries. The House Lords debate the idea but eventually refuse to contemplate using WMDs on anybody, even the Clans. Although furious at this "display of weakness", the WoB nonetheless continue to negotiate and agreement is eventually reached to attack the Clans with the usual methods.


3068-69

Forces from all the Second Star League member-states assemble for the assault. This requires allowing WoB Militia units to pass through Steiner, FRR and Kurita space to reach their assigned staging grounds, which generates a lot of tension between them and the AFFC, KungsArmé and DCMS units also assembling on the same planets. (Nobody is idiotic enough to put them on the same worlds as Com Guard units.) I’m assuming (although it’s quite a big assumption) that the simmering distrust doesn’t boil over into a shooting war and that Operation Jihad is therefore launched on schedule. The Warden Wolves-in-Exile and the Nova Cats are both deeply uneasy about the whole business, but decide against making waves for the time being.

The Jade Falcons resist the onslaught with all their might and ultimately get torn to pieces before the survivors finally have the sense to turn and flee the Inner Sphere.

The Crusader Wolves fight long and hard until finally Vlad Ward is killed in battle. After that their resolve begins to falter. As their situation starts to become desperate, Phelan Kell asks to meet with their surviving leaders. In an eloquent and impassioned speech, he invites them to convert to the Warden cause and be reunited with their estranged kin on Arc-Royal. After protracted internal debate (and no few Trials of Grievance along the way), a majority of them vote to accept the invitation. The few who adamantly reject it (most of them members of the Warrior Caste) do nonetheless accept an offer of hegira instead. They pack up and leave the Inner Sphere, heading back to the Clan Homeworlds. The conflict has taken a terrible toll on the WarShip fleet of the newiy-reunified Clan: only the McKenna-class Werewolf and the Potemkin-class Full Moon have survived out of the former Warden Wolf-in-Exile fleet, while out of the former Crusader Wolf fleet only the Liberator-class Victoria Ward, Black Lion II-class Stealthy Kill and Congress-class Rogue have survived.

The Ghost Bears initially resist with all their might as well, but when their situation starts to become desperate they turn to the government of the rump FRR and offer to surrender to them in return for being granted asylum. The deal is struck. The WoB promptly become furious that the opportunity to "ethnically cleanse" the GBs from the Inner Sphere is being thrown away. Vitriolic denunciations and thinly veiled threats are made against the FRR, but with the Com Guards backing him Christian Mänsdottir stands firm and eventually the WoB subside, still inwardly seething.

Ragnar Magnusson begins acting as a mediator to facilitate the integration of the Ghost Bears into Rasalhagian society (rather than the other way around as in the canon timeline). According to the terms of the final agreement that’s eventually hammered out, the GBs will retain most of their existing military installations and residential enclaves on the worlds of Damian, Thule, Holmsbu, Pinnacle, Susquehanna, Trondheim, Last Frontier, Radje, Vipaava, Jezersko, Pomme De Terre, Predlitz, Spittal, Casere and Goito. They’ll provide military protection for those planets (theoretically on behalf of the KungsArmé) and answer for the good behaviour of their own lower castes, while Rasalhagian governors appointed by the Riksdag will govern the indigenous population. They’ll also retain their two small ‘Mech factories on Goito and Thule, which are renamed from Dominion Facility Kappa-4 and Kappa-5 to Ghost Bear Facility Kappa-4 and Kappa-5, respectively. It won’t quite amount to a ghetto existence, but it’ll obviously have some similarities. The hope is that the GBs will eventually become as well-integrated as the Wolves-in–Exile did on Arc-Royal, but nobody expects that goal to be fully achieved for quite some time. GB administrative headquarters will be located on Goito, near the location of Facility Kappa-4. Media pundits soon begin referring to these worlds unofficially (and provocatively) as the "Goito Prefecture", by way of analogy with the Irece Prefecture the DC ceded to the Nova Cats. In turn, Rasalhagian nationalist extremists (unwittingly being stoked up by WoB ROM operatives who've infiltrated them) quickly begin referring to it (always with as much sneering, contemptuous mockery as they can manage to project into their voices) as the "Ghetto Prefecture", in a deliberate attempt to mortally offend against the honor and dignity of the GBs to the point where the latter will ultimately feel so provoked that they'll start lashing out with armed violence. The extremists hope that this will thereby demonstrate the supposed true nature of the GBs for all the Inner Sphere to see, thereby creating a climate of public opinion which will force the Riksdag to abrogate its treaty with them promising them asylum in perpetuity and expel the GBs from all Rasalhagian territory once and for all. That's despite the fact that the GBs still possess five (severely damaged but still repairable) WarShips, the Leviathan II-class Rasalhague, the Essex II-class White Fang and White Claw and the Carrack-class Den Mother and Yggdrasil.

As the JF Occupation Zone is liberated, the Diamond Sharks on Twycross are bypassed and left alone, at the insistence of profit-minded Lyrans who hope to continue doing business with them. Through the mediation of the GBs, they also manage to persuade the Riksdag to let them keep a large enclave on Trondheim, although formal authority over the planet and its indigenous population is again transferred to a Rasalhagian governor.

As the Jade Falcons are driven from the Inner Sphere, they attempt to dismantle and carry away their key manufacturing facilities. Where this isn’t possible they attempt to destroy them rather than allow them to fall into Spheroid hands. But even the ruins are worth possessing, since the demolition jobs were rushed and sometimes not very thorough and they still offer some interesting wreckage for study.

In the aftermath, the uneasily reunited Wolves are given the entire Wotan PDZ as a fiefdom of the FedCom and, with some regret on the part of many, decamp en masse from Arc-Royal for their new home. Wolf Clan Sites 1-3 are dismantled and their components shipped to Wotan for reassembly there.

Obviously, all of this totally derails the secret plans on the part of the Hell’s Horses to return to the Inner Sphere in force. The Homeworld Clans as a whole decide against aiding their embattled brethren as they’re driven from the Inner Sphere: if the latter have now grown weak and degenerate enough that "Spheroid barbarians" can rout them on this scale, they deserve their fate. Calls are soon made in Grand Council for the remaining Jade Falcons, Wolves and Ghost Bears in the Homeworlds to be Absorbed by "stronger and purer" Clans. The motions are carried. The ensuing Trials see widespread breaches of zellbrigen as those facing Absorption fight back savagely against opponents they see as hypocritical opportunists. The Absorption of the remaining Jade Falcons in the Homeworlds by the Steel Vipers is particularly brutal.

And along the way, little noticed by the rest of the Inner Sphere, Sharilar Mori dies of natural causes and is succeeded as Primus by Gavin Dow. Anastasius Focht has a quiet word with him in private and shortly afterwards Dow appoints Katherine Luarca, formerly the head of Com Guard ‘Mech forces, as the new Precentor Martial of ComStar. The unspoken understanding is that Luarca will always be ready to listen to advice from Focht (and, when appropriate, from Precentor Naval Alain Beresick) until he judges her to have grown into her new role enough for her to not need it amymore.


3070

Sun-Tzu Liao marries Naomi Centrella.

Treyhang Liao marries Isis Marik.

A tentative pause in Operation Jihad (increasingly being referred to by the WoB and many others as simply the Jihad) is called at the insistence of the House Lords after the Clan Occupation Zones have all finally been liberated, with the Successor States allowing the WoB Militia to occupy and administer most of the former Bandit Kingdom worlds they’ve fought to help liberate, as a concrete reward for their labours and as an attempt at bribing them to calm down a bit (although the FedCom annexes the former Greater Valkyrate worlds of Erewhon and Lackhove).

The absence of any kind of violent power struggle within the FWL at this time means there are no disruptions to its ongoing WarShip construction program either. The Thera-class Thessaly enters service on schedule and three more vessels (which never existed in the canon timeline) come online in the same timeframe: the Eagle-class Gaheris and Palamedes (assigned as escorts to the Thessaly) and the Zechetinu II-class Tarantula.

Plans are made to convene the Fifth Whitting Conference on Marik. The false Thomas, with his insight into the thinking of the Master, becomes acutely fearful that the Toyama sect are secretly planning something along the lines of taking the House Lords hostage and demanding that they vote to amend the Star League Constitution to make him First Lord for life – and that they then order the establishment of Blakism as the official religion in all their realms. (The truth may be that they’re actually planning to brainwash them into becoming card-carrying Blakists in their own right.) Seeing no other way to even try to avoid looming disaster without running the risk of provoking reprisals directed against his family by the Toyama, Thomas makes an excuse to travel off Atreus and stages his death in an apparent misjump, arranging for some mangled wreckage from a destroyed JumpShip of the same class as his to be found in an uninhabited system at the same distance from the Atreus system as his stated destination but in another direction. (He’s really going off with a trusted crew to try to locate the Hidden World of Jardine.)

The FWL goes into public mourning for its still widely-respected leader. With his children by Sherryl Halas still minors and Isis Marik generally regarded as not worthy of serious consideration, debate over the succession is fierce. Eventually Corinne Marik is pressured into putting herself forward as a candidate by her father Paul and he and his Blakist backers successfully manipulate the deliberations of Parliament to secure her election. However, all this political upheaval in the FWL means that one of the few things most people can agree on is that Marik is no longer a suitable venue for the Whitting Conference. It’s agreed to convene it on Tharkad instead. The Toyama and the Master are thoroughly confounded by this spanner in the works of their plans for the Third Transfer. The Master has some suspicions as to what’s really happened, but there doesn’t seem to be any way of proving it or exacting any meaningful retribution against anybody at the moment….

As the Inner Sphere leaders begin arriving on Tharkad for the Conference, it’s generally agreed that with the conspicuous increase in the fortunes of her family in recent years, Candace is the obvious choice to be elected the next First Lord (particularly when the only other Successor State leader who hasn’t had the opportunity to serve yet is the uninspiring Mänsdottir). You can imagine how Sun-Tzu feels about this prospect, but for him to pull the CC out of the SSL now would accomplish nothing except his own marginalization. He grits his teeth and keeps an icy smile frozen in place as his aunt is formally elected the fifth First Lord of the Second Star League. After that, the first order of business is where Operation Jihad goes from here. Since everyone has seen by now how fanatical the WoB are about it, they have some inkling of the possible worst-case reaction if they vote to call a halt to it now. With this in mind and remembering how the WoB managed to sneak the LCS Invincible into the Tharkad system before presenting it as a surprise gift to the FedCom three years before, the AFFC WarShip squadron on station in the system is on full alert.

After protracted arguments, a majority vote (with only the WoB and FWL dissenting) votes to call a halt to Operation Jihad for at least the next three years, to allow the exhausted Successor State militaries time to rest and recover. Meanwhile, some Inner Sphere naval assets will spend that time shadowing the ragged remnants of the Jade Falcons as they limp homeward along the Exodus Road, watching to see if they try to turn around and come back. This is generally thought to be a needless precaution, however. The FWL surprises everyone by volunteering a large contingent of WarShips for this role. The WoB, meanwhile, have settled into an attitude of cold and detached attentiveness to the debates of the others which is giving many the creeps. Eventually the Conference is adjourned and the delegates depart without incident. (Tharkad space traffic control breathes a deep sigh of relief.)


3071

The only noteworthy development in the Inner Sphere this year is that Theodore dies from a stroke and is succeeded as Coordinator of the Draconis Combine by Hohiro Kurita. The Black Dragons hover on the brink of launching another attempted putsch, but narrowly decide against it for the moment.
« Last Edit: 23 November 2020, 17:03:45 by Hominid Mk II »
Ever felt that The Powers That Were at FASA, WizKids and FanPro never gave Victor Steiner-Davion and the Federated Commonwealth a fair shake in the canon timeline? Then you might be interested in my Victor Victorious AU at

https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=65976.0

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Hominid Mk II

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Re: Victor Victorious (Redux)
« Reply #2 on: 11 July 2019, 12:25:15 »
3072

Early in the year, the FedCom, DC and Com Guard WarShip contingents which had been shadowing the Jade Falcons and the small contingent of diehard Wolves following in their wake return to the Inner Sphere with shocking news to report. They relate how they followed the trail of the refugees almost to the Pentagon Worlds without incident before suddenly running headlong into the Wolves, who had turned around without warning and were heading back towards the Inner Sphere in an obvious state of disarray. The FWL Admiral in overall command of the Inner Sphere force had then immediately ordered a pre-emptive attack on the ragtag Clan force. Already seemingly savagely battered from an earlier battle, the Wolves had fought with desperate ferocity before finally being largely annihilated at heavy cost to the Inner Sphere force. The FWL Admiral had attempted to sequester all of the few prisoners taken aboard his own ships, but the FedCom, DC and Com Guard commanders had refused to allow this. They’d wanted the opportunity to interrogate some of the Clansmen themselves and suspected that the Admiral was deliberately trying to prevent this for unknown reasons. The stories they subsequently heard were horrifying.

As the Jade Falcons and the diehard Wolves had made their weary way homeward, they’d reluctantly fallen in with one another and travelled together. As their long voyage had continued they’d received reports of the Trials of Absorption being fought against their brethren in the Homeworlds, adding to their misery. Then, without warning, they’d begun receiving a rash of garbled HPG transmissions indicating that the Pentagon Worlds and the Kerensky Cluster were coming under wholesale attack from unknown forces who were making large-scale use of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons. Millions were dead already and there was no sign of any let-up in the assault. The combined refugee fleets had hastened to the aid of their Homeworlds, only to then be caught in a devastating ambush in space by unknown WarShips. Completely routed, they’d been forced to turn and flee again. The fleets had scattered in a bid to throw off pursuit. The Wolves had then run into the Inner Sphere force that had been shadowing them and attacked it in desperation, leaving most of them now dead or captive.

The FWL Admiral had tried to insist that all of this was no business of his battered fleet, which must carry out its orders and maintain a watch on the Exodus Road. The FedCom, DC and Com Guard commanders had refused to accept this and insisted on taking their contingents home to report on these wholly unexpected events to their own governments. As they prepared to leave they’d had an uneasy feeling that they themselves might be in some danger of attack from the FWL contingent if they let their guard down. They’d remained vigilant all the way back to the Inner Sphere, but had a strong suspicion that they’d been shadowed by an FWL detachment all the way. Since the garbled descriptions of the forces attacking the Clan Homeworlds sounded distinctly reminiscent of the Word of Blake, the Inner Sphere contingent had taken the precaution of leaving the Exodus Road and making the last stage of the return journey through uninhabited star systems, rather than passing through the former Bandit Kingdom territories coreward of the Inner Sphere which were under WoB Militia occupation. They suspected this might well have saved them from being ambushed in an attempt to destroy and silence them.

An emergency summit of the Star League Council is convened on Tharkad. (Candace had initially intended to hold it on Liao, but Victor had urged her not to do so in order to avoid affronting Sun-Tzu so much that he’d refuse to come.) At the conference, Cameron St. Jamais is the only leader of the WoB delegation and he refuses to answer any questions as to the whereabouts of William Blane. He stuns the other delegates by calmly admitting that the WoB are responsible for what’s happening at the Clan Homeworlds and insisting that their actions will continue until the Clan threat is eliminated once and for all. A motion is swiftly tabled calling for the WoB to be expelled from the Star League for its atrocities. St. Jamais holds discussions behind closed doors with Sun-Tzu, Emma Centrella and Grover Shraplen. When the vote is finally called, all three abstain. Corinne Marik defies the wishes of some of her own entourage and likewise abstains rather than trying to veto the measure. (Privately she’s been badly shaken by the reports of how her Admiral had behaved and suspects that he’s been subverted by the WoB. She’s beginning to fear that the entire FWL contingent may have been. And she’s right – they have. By this time they’re actively engaged in helping the Manei Domini bombard the Clan Homeworlds from orbit.) St. Jamais naturally votes against the motion. Candace, Victor, Hohiro, Mansdottir and Dow all vote for it. The motion is carried by a simple majority and the WoB are expelled from the Star League. St. Jamais immediately departs the conference without saying another word.

While the other Successor State leaders are still debating on Tharkad as to what to do next, a large WoBM force descends on the FedCom worlds of Yorii, Chara, Thorin, New Earth, Rigil Kentarus, Caph, Alula Australis, Sirius, Graham IV, Keid, Procyon, New Home, Bryant, Carver V and Epsilon Eridani. A smaller force invades the DC worlds of Asta, Altair, Dieron, Saffel and Fomalhaut. (Or in other words, every inhabited world within one jump of Terra.) All resistance is brutally crushed and a disparate collection of twenty worlds surrounding Terra is proclaimed the "Word of Blake Core Protectorate". The former Bandit Kingdom worlds in the Near Periphery under WoBM occupation are similarly designated the "Outer Protectorate". An official communiqué addressed to the entire Inner Sphere declares that the occupation of these worlds is necessary to the defense of "Blessed Terra" against possible revenge attacks from any rogue Clansmen still at large. It warns that they will be held against any and all attacks by any and every means at the disposal of the WoB. The inference is plain: mess with us and we’ll nuke and bio-bomb you too.

Within days, the FWLM in turn launches invasions of the FedCom worlds of Callison, Marcus, Zosma, Oliver, Castor, Devil’s Rock, Pollux, Talitha, Van Diemen IV and Wasat. The defenders are again brutally crushed. Paul Marik issues a communiqué stating the support of his government (in terms that seem to imply that he does think of it as his government and not that of his absent daughter) for the actions of the WoB and declaring that these former FWL worlds have been reoccupied to prevent them being used as staging grounds for any "criminal" attacks that may be being contemplated against the new Core Protectorate by the FedCom and DC.

The FedCom is now effectively cut in two, with the Davion half of it left to function autonomously under the Regency of Yvonne Steiner-Davion (and, in practice, Tancred Sandoval) during the absence of Victor.

And then a WoBM WarShip force jumps into the Outreach system and takes up positions ready to attack the Dragoon WarShip squadron on station there at a moment’s notice. It broadcasts a peremptory warning that Outreach is under Interdict as a precautionary measure and all traffic into or out of the system is forbidden until further notice.

Corinne Marik sinks into shell-shock at how completely she’s lost her grip on affairs in the FWL during her absence and is left wondering if she ever really knew her father at all. She’s reduced to a passive spectator as the other House Lords try to digest everything that’s happened. Victor and Hohiro are anxious to dislodge the WoB and the FWL from the worlds they’ve seized, but the possible consequences of war are horrifying. Sun-Tzu makes token noises in favour of negotiation and compromise which are actually deliberately calculated to anger them and provoke them into even greater resolve to fight… knowing that if they get drawn into an all-out conflict Victor will have nothing to spare to help Candace out when – inevitably – Sun-Tzu then invades her upstart realm. This of course makes Candace urge them not to act with undue haste. Dow favours military action too, but Focht is far more cautious and Mansdottir is acutely fearful of WoB reprisals if he allows the Com Guards to use the FRR as a staging ground. Especially as the Ghost Bears he’s given asylum to are now preparing to shed rivers of Wobbie blood as soon as they’re given an opportunity… and Ragnar seems to be of similar mind. Emma Centrella feels obligated to follow the line taken by Sun-Tzu. Grover Shraplen does the same, planning to launch an invasion of the Pleiades Cluster once the FedCom is preoccupied with the WoB.

Meanwhile, poor Mitchell Avellar is just plain terrified to even contemplate what the Snow Ravens based in his fragile realm may bring upon it in their wrath against the WoB.

And two thousand light-years away, Precentor Apollyon and the surviving Homeworld Clan Khans prepare to give their mutual death-struggle everything they’ve got left.

[This scenario has been deliberately constructed to make it far more difficult for the WoB to run amok in the Inner Sphere with impunity. Precentor Apollyon and the Manei Domini have already been deployed to the theatre of operations they were always intended to fight in – the Clan Homeworlds. They can’t just drop everything and come running back to help straight away if things start to get desperate for Cameron St. Jamais and the regular WoB Militia. Roughly two-thirds of the total naval strength of the WoB as a whole is away out there too. Even assuming that in theory all of them could come back in a hurry using Super-Jump Drive capability (although actually I don't think it's ever been established unequivocally to date rhat all of their ships have it), in practice their doing so would mean leaving their ground forces behind to be slaughtered by orbital bombardment from the remaining Clan WarShips. And in any case they could only make one wave of attacks back in the Inner Sphere before becoming trapped in the systems they first jumped into. So I simply don't think Super-Jump Drive capability would be used, and that means they can’t realistically get home in the event of a recall order for the best part of a year.

OTOH, with the WoB Militia in control of a belt of worlds formerly belonging to the Greater Valkyrate, Oberon Confederation, Elysian Fields and so on, they can attack the coreward worlds of the FedCom, DC and FRR, forcing them to fight a two-front war.

There’s also the WOBS Erinyes, the "BT rips off the Death Star" super-massive WarShip the WoB have created by modifying a Newgrange-class YardShip almost beyond recognition… which nobody else in the IS even knows exists yet.

However, the absence of the FedCom Civil War means that a much higher percentage of the precious WarShip assets of the Successor States are intact at the beginning of this conflict, making the balance of naval power less uneven. The Com Guards and Wolf’s Dragoons are at full naval strength too – and the late Victoria Parrdeau obviously won’t be arranging to have an alternate version of Case White turn into a disaster for the CGs.

Knowing that the WoB are prepared to use biological weapons to wipe out all life on an entire world, just in order to permanently destroy its shipbuilding capacity, makes Inner Sphere WarShip and AeroSpace Fighter forces alert and motivated enough to fight to the last breath to stop the Wobbies getting near enough to planets like Alarion and Galax to poison their atmospheres. It also means that all the Successor States hold back something like half their own total naval forces from frontline duty and deploy them to protect the shipyards where they were originally built, ensuring that the total number of IS WarShips to survive the war will be significantly higher while any destroyed can eventually be replaced. And it means that the balance of naval forces on the front lines will be left much more even than it would have been otherwise, despite the fact that the WoBM have dispatched about two-thirds of their own navy to the Clan Homeworlds and therefore made them unavailable for frontline duty in the Inner Sphere. They'll have to rely primarily on the vessels they've stolen from the FWLM for the defense of the worlds they've turned into their Core and Outer Protectorates.

With Sharilar Mori dead and the false Thomas Marik believed to be dead, the WoB judge that revealing their true identities after the fact would be significantly less psychologically devastating to ComStar and the FWL respectively if they still tried it than would have been the case in the canon timeline. They also judge that the impact of revealing the true identity of Focht would be comparatively limited by itself. (Considering that he was never able to designate Victor as his successor, the claim that the office of Precentor Martial had become a hereditary sinecure for the Steiner family certainly couldn’t be advanced here.) And with Parrdeau dead, they haven’t been able to acquire the irrefutable evidence needed to convince the general public of the truth of such exposés in any case.]


The actual shooting war starts with a DC attempt to retake Dieron, which fails. This is followed by an AFFC bid to drive away the WoBM WarShips blockading the Outreach system, which the Dragoons naturally join in with in short order, which also fails. A subsequent WoB Militia counterattack drives the Dragoons from the Outreach system, devastates the planet and annexes it to the Core Protectorate. WoBM forces in the Outer Protectorate then attack the Ghost Bear "Goito Prefecture" in the FRR, beginning with the nuclear obliteration of GB Facility Kappa-5 on Thule. Their flagrant disregard for Rasalhagian civilians being killed in the process provokes a deeply reluctant Riksdag into declaring war on the Blakists too. The Com Guards then offer their support to the FRR… and by extension the GBs as well.

All this is enough to get all three coreward Successor States and ComStar committed to a grim and bloody war with the WoB. The FedCom and the DC resolve that the Core Protectorate has to be destroyed, but they consider it sensible to drive the FWLM from the Terran Corridor first. Since Blakist sympathizers will predominate among the units deployed there, that’s going to be a very tough nut to crack in its own right.

Without ever actually formally declaring themselves allies of the WoB, the CC swiftly manufacture a casus belli with the SIC and the MoC dutifully follow their lead. The SIC Military still hasn’t finished building up its numbers to a level where it can reasonably hope to defend its more recently acquired territories by itself, but OTOH this means that many AFFC units are still in place on the worlds ceded to Candace by Victor. This will be a long and gruelling struggle too.

The TC invades the Pleiades Cluster and the result is much the same kind of bloody quagmire as in the canon timeline.

As the conflict progresses, the grand strategy of the WoB seems to be essentially limited to repulsing repeated, hard-fought FedCom/DC assaults on the Core Protectorate while an all-out propaganda campaign continues to represent the Blakists to the peoples of the Inner Sphere as their tragically-misunderstood deliverers from the Clan threat… even as their covert agents work overtime to stoke up renewed separatist sentiment in the two halves of the FedCom, arguing that the war is being fought merely to re-establish the sundered Terran Corridor that had formerly made possible a union of two realms which – it’s claimed – none of their people had really wanted anyway. In the end, this strategy seemingly fails. Many regional leaders and ordinary people do indeed fall for the Blakist line and Victor is wracked by self-doubt. He seriously considers throwing in the towel, splitting the FedCom back into the Federated Suns and Lyran Commonwealth again, and abdicating his thrones in favour of Peter and Yvonne as in the canon timeline. But he eventually rejects this option, in large part because he knows that the DC would feel betrayed by him and all the old hatreds would come flooding back, destroying the work of years spent trying to bury them. He also doesn’t want to leave Hohiro personally in the lurch, knowing that he can’t afford the loss of face at home that would result from having to let Dieron in particular go.

The Manei Domini are never recalled from the Clan Homeworlds or deployed in the Inner Sphere (or at least not openly) and the apocalyptic carnage they specialize in is never visited on the IS at this time. The WoBM still deploy quite a few tactical nukes, but only against reasonably legitimate military targets for the most part. The worst atrocities they commit are attempts to destroy the shipyards in the Galax and Alarion systems and to bio-bomb the planets themselves into the bargain. Both attacks fail to accomplish either of their objectives: the shipyards are damaged but not destroyed and the planets escape unscathed. (An important factor contributing to the failure of the assault on Galax is the diversion of efforts that would have been better directed towards trying to destroy the Galax Megaplex itself into a successful effort to destroy the SLS Manassas, which has been drydocked there for years in a partially disassembled state while Federated-Boeing Intertellar studied its prototype Improved Compact K-F Drive in the hope of replicating it: the possibility of them eventually succeeding has made the Blakists so nervous that their priorities have become skewed.) Simultaneous attacks on New Samarkand Naval Works and Midway Shipyards also inflict heavy (but not irreparable) damage and succeed in destroying two still-incomplete WarShips, the Yamato-class Musashi and the Kaga-class Shinano. When the AFFC and DCMS retaliate by unleashing tacnukes of their own against WoBM forces, the WoBM appear to get cold feet and their own use of nukes noticeably diminishes thereafter. Their opponents respond in kind. Apart from this, the Word don’t make any other attempts to depopulate entire worlds or take any other actions in the Inner Sphere which might almost seem calculated to ensure that they’ll be remembered as insane and terrifying monsters in the judgement of posterity.

Paul Marik has effectively usurped power from his own daughter and lacks any real legitimacy in the eyes of anyone except fellow Blakist conspirators… even more so since it’s fairly obvious to everyone that he doesn’t really want to be in charge anyway and it therefore isn’t very difficult for people to draw the conclusion that he’s just a reluctant front man for the WoB. His attempts to take the FWL into a full-scale war in support of them almost trigger a civil war instead as many FWLM units refuse outright to obey his illegal orders for them to put their lives on the line for genocidal fanatics. Kirc Cameron-Jones predictably takes this opportunity to proclaim himself Captain-General and thereby provokes Therese Brett-Marik into responding in kind. The FWL begins to fracture as in the canon timeline.

With FWL internal politics thrown into disarray, reinforcements for the Blakist-sympathizing units deployed to the Terran Corridor aren’t forthcoming and the AFFC are eventually able to destroy them or drive them out.

The shock of having almost half of their total naval forces stolen out from under them at a stroke by the WoB has made the rival power blocs forming within the FWL much more nervous about risking the vessels they still have than they might otherwise have been. When they do finally start deploying them they're very cautious about it and the WoB never have the opportunity to stage ambushes like the the one that destroyed most of the Regulan fleet in the canon timeline.

The death of Victoria Parrdeau and her replacement as Precentor ROM by Elise MacTaggart has meant that a number of other WoB ROM agents within ComStar have been detected and either eliminated or fed only disinformation, while a number of ComStar ROM agents have been successfully infiltrated into the WoB without being detected. Wolfnet operatives manage to obtain quite a bit more information about some of the many covert activities of the WoB as well. ComStar ROM and Wolfnet are both able (independently of one another) to discover the existence of the Caspar II SDS and warn the other enemies of the WoB of the threat it poses. Nobody will be squandering precious WarShips in anything like the Wolf's Dragoons assault on Mars or the Case White disaster here.

And there will most certainly never be any kind of golden opportunity presented to the WoB for them to decimate the leadership of most of their enemies at a single stroke by using somebody like Fritz Donner as a human bomb!

The first major defeat for the WoB comes when agents of Chandrasekhar Kurita discover the location of Gabriel in the Odessa system (much as in the canon timeline) and a joint AFFC-DCMS-Com Guard task force assaults and captures it. The defenders fail to sabotage the parts of it that aren’t destroyed during the assault itself as quickly or as effectively as they did in the canon timeline, so a good deal of useful equipment is taken intact by the task force. As per prior agreement, it’s divided between the AFFC, DCMS and Com Guards in roughly equal shares.

The next major defeat for the WoB sees them eventually feeling compelled to abandon the Outer Protectorate after it comes under sustained attack from FedCom, DC, KungsArmé, Ghost Bear, Com Guard, Diamond Shark and even Snow Raven forces. The WoBM forces based there are pulled back to reinforce the Core Protectorate. Then the latter is slowly ground down and destroyed.

The naval battles during the eventual liberation of Terra itself see the destruction of the WoB fleet accomplished by a combined force of WarShips from ComStar, the Successor States, those battered Clans who’ve effectively accepted a status as vassals of the Great Houses, the Diamond Sharks and the Snow Ravens. (As opposed to a fleet mostly drawn from the Clans as in the canon timeline.) Victory still only comes after a heavy toll has been taken by the WoB SDS system and their last few WarShips… but although the overall number of ships destroyed is about the same, a key difference is that here the Successor States have a higher percentage of their WarShips surviving while the Clans have a higher percentage of theirs destroyed. The Successor States still retain enough shipyard capacity for them to eventually have the option of building more to replace those lost... and eventually they most definitely will!

The leading role in the ground campaign on Terra itself is played by the Com Guards, albeit with major support from the FedCom and DC.

In the aftermath ComStar resumes the administration of Terra with little argument from the FedCom or DC, largely because the only alternative is for the latter to have to fight another war between themselves in order to determine which of them should have it. The Dragoons reclaim Outreach too, although the WoB have employed scorched earth tactics there on such a scale that it’ll be a bleak homecoming. The CGs have sustained such heavy losses over the course of the conflict that the survivors won’t be up to much beyond garrisoning Terra, Mars and the Ross and Luyten systems for some time to come. The combination of their straitened circumstances, the end of the WoB threat and the prior ending of the Clan threat leads to the Successor States quietly amending the terms of their longstanding agreements to having CG troops stationed on their worlds, limiting the CG presence on most worlds to no more than a single Level-II unit stationed in and around the HPG compound itself. This leads in turn to a decision by Primus Dow not to attempt to rebuild them to anything like their former strength even when circumstances might eventually permit it again.

As you might guess, it’s the remaining naval assets of the Clans who participated in the liberation of Terra which go on to devastate Gibson and Circinus as they expunge the Master and his last remaining diehard loyalists from known space. (The Regulans have never been provoked into developing a particular hatred of them in this timeline.) Following his headlong flight from Gibson, the Master travels mostly via uncharted systems before finally reaching and then making his last stand at Circinus. Paradise, Diamantina and Poulsbo never harbor him at any point and therefore aren't targeted for destruction as well.

There’s no equivalent of the "Bloody Tricentennial" attacks here.
« Last Edit: 23 November 2020, 17:04:46 by Hominid Mk II »
Ever felt that The Powers That Were at FASA, WizKids and FanPro never gave Victor Steiner-Davion and the Federated Commonwealth a fair shake in the canon timeline? Then you might be interested in my Victor Victorious AU at

https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=65976.0

.

Hominid Mk II

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Re: Victor Victorious (Redux)
« Reply #3 on: 11 July 2019, 12:27:56 »
When it’s finally all over, despite everything, the FedCom is still tenuously united. The shared struggle against the WoB has restored some of the sense of solidarity between its two halves that was lost back when the Steiner half felt it had been left to suffer through the Clan Invasion alone. Also important, few of the leading financial movers and shakers are willing to advocate incurring the additional economic pain that would result from dissolving it any time soon. Having led his people to a hard-won victory, Victor is still popular with a majority of the population, much to the frustration of the likes of the Haseks and the Kelswa-Steiners.

Helen Trempeleau never quite musters the resolve to create a breakaway state of her own in the Outback region of the FedCom, but she does do everything she can to prevent the worlds under her control being left completely defenceless against bandits because of the withdrawal of garrison troops to fight on the front lines against the WoB, CC and TC. She doesn’t actually achieve all that much in this regard, but her unstinting efforts greatly endear her to her people. With the end of hostilities, Victor is finally able to spare some thought for the increasingly widespread dissatisfaction now making itself felt among the people of the Outback. He finally attempts to defuse it by re-creating the old Outer March of centuries before, with its regional capital once again on Filtvelt, promoting Trempeleau to Duchess and naming her hereditary Minister of the Outer March. He privately warns her that any suspicion of her putting her own agenda before the welfare of the FedCom as a whole will result in the harshest of punishments.

The final defeat of the WoB compels Sun-Tzu to at last sue for peace with Candace before Victor can redirect all his efforts against him. The Junta headed by Boris Tharn refuse to formally do the same, but both sides in the Taurian conflict call ceasefires and these eventually become permanent.

The net gains the CC has made at the expense of the SIC are fairly modest. The worlds of Genoa, Zurich, Tall Trees, Aldebaran, Menkalinan, Saiph, New Canton, Liao, Ningpo, Gan Singh, Pleione, Poznan, Styk, Shensi, St. Andre, Hunan and Tsitsang have been returned to the Capellan fold, but it’s decidedly questionable whether they’re enough to make it all have been worthwhile. (Tao ‘MechWorks on Styk is the only prize of much material value.) The worlds of Minnacora, New Sagan and Capricorn III were seized back during the course of the struggle, but were eventually lost again. Still, at least Sun-Tzu now finally rules the ancestral family homeworld of Liao, which may matter a great deal more in terms of symbolic value. But his failure to permanently retake other important worlds, in particular the shipyards of Necromo and Bergan Industries on Ares, is a bitter pill to have to swallow. The annexation of Detroit along the way hasn’t done much to sweeten it.

At the height of the struggle, Kali Liao sacrificed her own life to kill the "Dancing Joker" before he could assassinate Sun-Tzu, having been hired by Tormana in his last attempt at reasserting himself as a player. Tormana was then killed in turn by Thuggee cultists in suitably gruesome fashion.

All in all, Sun-Tzu will ultimately go down in Capellan history as only a "qualified success" rather than being semi-deified as in the canon timeline. (The phrase Xin Sheng will be one that leaves a bitter taste in the mouth all around after he’s gone.) Their long suffering at his hands has made the people of the SIC fanatical in their determination never again to be part of the CC. The people of the CC (or at least all those who consider themselves truly patriotic) have meanwhile come to regard the SIC as a loathsome nest of traitors and Davion puppets who deserve nothing better than death or enslavement, rather than the "estranged brothers and sisters" they were before. Any prospect of the two states ever being reunited one day now seems impossibly remote.

The MoC has lost the lives of many of its soldiers, but otherwise come through fairly well. The former New Colony Region worlds of Joppa and Úr Cruinne have been annexed (the latter at its own request) in an attempt to convince the people that they’ve gotten something concrete as a reward for all their labours. The rest of the NCR has broken away to become the Fronc Reaches, largely unnoticed by anyone else.

Meanwhile, the TC is a complete shambles. The worlds of Amber Grove, Perdition, Logan’s Land, Norman’s World, Celentaro, Organo and Cynon have been occupied by the AFFC and proclaimed an independent Perdition Union under FedCom military protection. What they actually are, of course, is a satellite state with a puppet government on Perdition going through the motions of administration but having no real power at all. Victor has no enthusiasm whatsoever for this setup, but his own people want to feel they’ve gained something as recompense for their long ordeal at the hands of the "Taurian barbarians" and there’ll be an outcry if he attempts to withdraw from the occupied worlds anytime soon. It’ll be at least a generation before any kind of diplomatic settlement can even be contemplated and even then only if the ruling military Junta on Taurus (currently headed by Boris Tharn) has been overthrown in the meantime. Meanwhile, all of the newer worlds settled in recent decades by the Far Looker movement have rebelled against the authority of the Junta and pledged allegiance to Erik Martens-Calderon (and Cham Kithong). An increasingly brutal police state is taking shape in the remaining older worlds and there’s no obvious end in sight to the sufferings of their people.

The FWL is a shambles too. Corrine is forced to sit out much of the conflict in "protective custody" on Tharkad. When a revolt against Blakist domination in the Marik Commonwealth overthrows the illegal rule of her father Paul, Corrine is able to persuade Victor to set her free and provide her with transportation home. She makes valiant attempts to re-establish herself as Captain-General, but to no avail. All the old troublemakers (Regulus, Andurien, the Rim Commonality, the Silver Hawks, Ohren and Zion) refuse outright to acknowledge her authority and continue to effectively function as independent powers. Eventually the FWL is formally dissolved as in the canon timeline.

The liberation of Terra from the WoB is compared in triumphalist propaganda to its liberation from Stefan Amaris by Aleksandr Kerensky three centuries before. It’s hailed as a victory for the Star League… but this is a claim that soon starts to ring somewhat hollow when people stop to realize that the membership of the SL now effectively consists of just the FedCom, the DC, the FRR, the SIC and ComStar. None of the fragments of the disintegrating FWL has ever formally withdrawn from the SL, but none of them has any representation in it either because there’s no Captain-General to act as Star League Council Lord for them all. Corrine argues that since she previously filled that role, her newly-formed Marik-Stewart Commonwealth should inherit the SL membership formerly belonging to the FWL as a whole, but this is seen by the remaining Council Lords as primarily a stratagem to enhance her own status… and in any case the entire region is still tainted with the stigma of Blakism in the minds of many people in the rest of the Inner Sphere. Corinne is turned down… and both she and the other leaders of the former FWL are privately informed that none of their states will be considered for membership while any leader who held power during the conflict still remains in power, or in any case until at least a generation has passed. This snub will be remembered for a long time to come… and none of these leaders or their heirs will be applying for SL membership in the foreseeable future. The CC has formally pulled out and the MoC has yet again followed its lead. There are now effectively two Taurian Concordats and neither of them is prepared to participate either. Without a full two-thirds of the previous membership still being prepared to formally subscribe to the idea of the SL, in legal terms it should technically cease to exist by default. When the Sixth Whitting Conference is convened on Terra in 3079 (nine years after the last one), the victorious powers amend the SL constitution to keep it in being, in name at least. The DC is conscious of the need to preserve it in order to enable the Nova Cats to continue to regard themselves as serving the SL rather than just the DC alone. The exhausted Candace (who has remained acting First Lord throughout the conflict because of the impossibility of formally convening to elect another while it was still raging) is finally able to formally relinquish power and Mänsdottir is elected the sixth First Lord of the Second Star League. Candace also abdicates as Duchess of St. Ives and Prime Minister of the SIC in favour of Kai. An attempt is made to reinvigorate popular support for the SL by allowing the current holder of the rotating office of First Lord to convene future Whitting Conferences at the original Court of the Star League on Terra, but the effect is limited at best.

 - - - - - -

As the Conference is drawing to a close, the assembled House Lords and Clan Khans are stunned when the false Thomas Marik shows up out of the blue after nine years of being believed dead. He reveals to them everything he knows about the Five Hidden Worlds and informs them of how he finally discovered the location of Jardine, after years of searching, only to find it uninhabited and in the midst of being devastated by a traps volcano. He warns them that there are three more Hidden Worlds still unaccounted for. This news is certainly unsettling enough, but there’s general agreement that they’re probably no great threat all in all. Thomas reveals his decades of imposture to the Star League Council and announces his withdrawal from public life before heading off to Oriente to be reunited with his family. Tragically, shortly afterwards a WoB ROM operative at the Ducal Court of Christopher Halas, cast adrift by the failure of his cause, tries to assassinate him in revenge for his "betrayal" and ends up killing his two eldest children instead. Thomas is left a broken man, held partly to blame for the deaths by his wife and his father-in-law and likewise blaming himself. He lives out his remaining days as a virtual hermit and his eventual death will scarcely be noticed by the Inner Sphere at large.

 - - - - - -

Word eventually filters through to the Inner Sphere via the Diamond Sharks that the remnants of the Homeworld Clans have finally prevailed over the Manei Domini. The cost has been horrific: Arcadia, Circe, Eden, Albion, Atreus, Barcella, Brim, Foster, Hector, Homer, Ironhold, Kirin, Lum, Marshall, New Kent, Niles, Priori, Shadow, Strana Mechty, Tamaron, Tokasha, Tranquil and York have all been nuked or bio-bombed into oblivion or have sustained such severe ecological damage that they’ve begun a rapid and irreversible slide into uninhabitability. The only Homeworlds left are Babylon, Dagda, Bearclaw, Delios, Gatekeeper, Glory, Grant’s Station, Hellgate, Paxon, Roche, Sheridan, Strato Domingo, Tathis, Tiber and Vinton. Of those Clans still based primarily in the Homeworlds which existed at the start of the conflict, the only ones still surviving in name when it’s finally over are the Star Adders, Cloud Cobras, Goliath Scorpions, Coyotes and Blood Spirits (the latter having survived only because the Manei Domini never found their hidden redoubt in the Colleen system). Remnants of the others have been Absorbed by one or another of these.

[Another idle aside… would it be a little too over the top to have Precentor Apollyon and Khan Brett Andrews kill each other in single combat?]

By contrast, another Clan which was officially dead at the start of the conflict has risen from its grave. The Manei Domini made no move to assault the worlds of the Tanis system in the early stages of the conflict, correctly guessing that the restive former Burrocks who’d been reshuffled there in the years following their Absorption by the Star Adders would seize their opportunity to throw off the Adder yoke and proclaim the rebirth of their Clan. They assumed they’d be able to lure the Burrocks into adopting a policy of effective neutrality by continuing to refrain from attacking them until the rest of the Clans had been smashed, after which they’d naturally have turned on the Burrocks without warning and destroyed them too. In the event, the Burrocks proved less gullible than they’d hoped, patiently waiting until the struggle between the Manei Domini and their fellow Clans was at the stage where everything hung in the balance and then attacking the MD from behind with savage ferocity. This had ultimately tipped the balance in favour of the Clans and made their final victory possible. The bloodied Burrocks then demanded recognition of their reclaimed independence and sole possession of the Tanite Worlds as a just reward for their efforts. The Star Adders and Cloud Cobras were doubly enraged at this: not only were the Burrocks and Tanites refusing to render proper submission to their Adder conquerors in a legitimate Trial of Absorption now some two decades past, but without the Tanite Worlds the Cobras themselves would have no planetary holdings left other than their surviving enclaves on Babylon. The Adders and Cobras sought to brand the Burrocks as dezgra, chalcas, cowardly opportunists deserving of nothing less than a Trial of Annihilation, but the Goliath Scorpions and Coyotes absolutely refused to go along with this. They pragmatically felt that the Clans as a whole had lost so much of their total population and resource base already that it was little short of criminal folly to even contemplate adding even more wholesale slaughter to the tally. The Blood Spirits did a great deal of soul-searching and eventually decided that they had to come down against the idea too. Although the Spirits had an enmity towards the Burrocks going back two and a half centuries, the Adders had done far more to deserve their hatred in recent times. And if the Adders and the Cobras were allowed to declare a Trial of Annihilation against the Burrocks for deviating from their ideas of proper Clan behavior, wouldn't the Spirits (long criticized on similar grounds by other Clans) soon be next on their hit list? So the Scorpions, Coyotes and Spirits eventually forced the Adders, Cobras and Burrocks into agreeing to fight a kind of combined "Trial of Reabsorption" by the Adders against the Burrocks, Trial of Refusal against their original Absorption by the Burrocks against the Adders and Trial of Possession between the Cobras and Adders and the Burrocks for control of the entire Tanis system. (In other words, might makes right and winner takes all in the usual Clan way.) The conflict that followed was absolutely brutal and saw countless individual breaches of zellbrigen, but by a very narrow margin the Burrocks won (only because the Adders and Cobras were already so badly weakened by their prior losses at the hands of the Manei Domini). The Adders and Cobras were apoplectic with rage, but the Scorpions, the Coyotes and (especially) the Spirits collectively demanded that they accept the result of the Trial with what semblance of good grace they could muster and move on… for the time being anyway.

Within a matter of months, the Cobra leadership had decided that their position in the Homeworlds was becoming untenable. The Coyotes were now openly gearing up to challenge them for possession of their Babylon holdings and their supposed allies the Adders had begun privately sounding them out about the prospect of an essentially unopposed Absorption. They decided to gamble their all on a bold plan to pack up and leave the Homeworlds and then throw everything they had left into an all-or-nothing effort to conquer the worlds of Nueva Castile. They reached an agreement to cede their Babylon holdings to the Coyotes upon their departure in return for not being subjected to any disruptions to their preparations for said departure in the form of Trials of Possession for specific objectives beforehand. They also renounced all their residual claims to any share of the Tanis system in favour of the Adders in return for some transport JumpShips. Their bold gamble ultimately paid off: the Castilians and Umayyads were swiftly conquered and the creation of the Cobra Imperio proclaimed.

At the height of the desperate struggle against the Manei Domini, when the Clans had teetered on the brink of total extinction, the remaining Diamond Sharks, Snow Ravens and Hell’s Horses had all taken the grim decision to cut and run. The Sharks fled to the refuge of the Attenbrooks system, roughly midway between the Clan Homeworlds and the Inner Sphere. The Ravens predictably fled to rhe Outworlds Alliance. The Horses took advantage of the preparations made for their derailed plan to migrate to the Inner Sphere in force and fled to the haven of their forward base on Nouveaux Paris. Meanwhile, the ragged remnants of the Jade Falcons, accompanied by the handful of surviving diehard Crusader Wolves, compelled by their devastating prior losses to sit out the struggle and search for a safe place in which to lie low until it should end, had found a short-term refuge in their Deep Periphery holding of the Khwarazm Empire. The Wolves eventually agreed to an essentially unopposed Absorption by the Jade Falcons, a condition of which was the election of Quinn Kerensky as JF Khan. Soon afterwards, a ragtag fleet of transport JumpShips laden with passenger and cargo DropShips arrived at the Khwarazm worlds escorted by two severely damaged WarShips (the Congress-class Kerensky's Pride and the Whirlwind-class Emerald Tornado), carrying the few Jade Falcon warriors and civilians who'd succeeded in escaping the apocalyptic bloodbath that was ravaging the Homeworlds. Their arrival gave the morale of the earlier arrivals a desperately-needed boost and, more importantly, the two additional WarShips gave them a significantly better chance of surviving in the long run when they were combined with the only three WarShips to (barely) survive their initial expulsion from the Inner Sphere (the Black Lion II-class Jade Aerie and the Aegis-class Jade Talon and Red Talon).

The existence of the Society (AKA the Scientists’ Cabal) has never been exposed to the rest of what remains of the Clans as a whole. The loss of Strana Mechty (nuked and bio-bombed) and Ironhold (nuked) has deprived them of their secret OmniMech and ProtoMech factories, but they still have hidden stockpiles which they may be able to retrieve one day (using IndustrialMechs with Environmental Sealing and protective suits to let them operate on poisoned worlds where necessary). The importance of the Scientist Caste to the eugenics program is greater than ever following the loss of the Master Genetic Repository on Strana Mechty and those of them who survived the general carnage are well-placed for a future takeover bid. The availability of Manei Domini salvage for study and perhaps reverse-engineering may well make them even more powerful. (If the Genecaste don’t really exist yet… they may one day.) And the chances are that Etienne (Balzac) will have been left to his own devices on his private world of Etienne’s Sanctuary after the JFs fled from the Inner Sphere and the Near Periphery, since it seems unlikely that they’d have bothered to detour to pick him up. Who knows what he might have gotten up to in the years since… ?

History is written by the winners and so the WoB will still go down in the official histories of what the Sucessor States will call the Blakist War or Second Star League Civil War (the Clans will call it the Genocide War) as madmen, but not as monsters like in the canon timeline because the worst of their atrocities were "only" perpetrated against the "barbarian" Clans and not against "civilized" fellow Spheroids. This will make the lot of would-be apologists and revisionists in future decades much easier. (And there will be some of those over the coming years.)

Another major difference from the canon timeline in terms of the overall picture of the post-war galaxy is (as I mentioned before) the survival of a greater proportion of IS WarShips and enough shipyard capacity to eventually start building more again. The way the canon timeline has relentlessly contrived throughout to render them virtually extinct has annoyed me no end and I’ve deliberately done everything I could to avoid paralleling it in this regard.

Nobody knows about the many arms caches and other secret facilities the WoB constructed on the worlds they’d controlled.

Nobody knows about the many leading figures on those worlds secretly brainwashed into devotion to the Blakist cause.

Nobody knows that many of the rank-and-file former members of the WoB who’ve "seen the error of their ways" and re-joined ComStar are inwardly committed to gradually subverting it back onto the path of secrecy, lies and manipulation that served it so well in the past.

Nobody knows what became of the WOBS Erinyes.

Nobody knows the locations of the three remaining Hidden Worlds.

And few people outside his family really noticed when, at the height of the war, Leftenant General Arthur Steiner-Davion was reported killed in action… but his body was never found.

 - - - - - -

Twenty years pass.

The Seventh Whitting Conference is held on a still-rebuilding Terra in 3082. Mänsdottir chooses this moment to announce his abdication as Elected Prince Regent of the FRR in favour of Ragnar. Victor is elected to serve a second term as First Lord and the Star League Constitution is further amended so that Hohiro will automatically be the next First Lord, followed by Ragnar, followed by Kai… and then the cycle will begin again. The Khans of Clan Wolf, Clan Ghost Bear and Clan Nova Cat are given the right to sit and speak in the Star League Council, but not to vote or be eligible for election as First Lord. (Much the same as with the Primus of ComStar.) The only noteworthy achievement of the Conference is an agreement to impose a moratorium on all offensive military operations (attempted conquest or raiding) in the Terran Corridor/Core Worlds region of the Inner Sphere for 20 years, to allow the region to recover further. Sun-Tzu is of course not a signatory to this, but he privately judges it best to voluntarily abide by it. Corrine (allowed as a courtesy to attend the Conference as a foreign observer) does sign up, but the other leaders of the former FWL states (the Silver Hawks in particular) refuse to be bound by this.

The next noteworthy event during this period is a foolhardy attempt by the Silver Hawks to retake worlds in the Terran Corridor from the FedCom in 3083, in defiance of the 20-year moratorium on such actions. They get slaughtered by a furious AFFC and the morale of the few survivors is further shaken by the hatred their actions earn them from the war-weary populations of those worlds, who had been expected to welcome them as liberators. With their own forces largely destroyed, the Silver Hawks are left with little choice but to accept military protection from (and eventually political absorption by) the Marik-Stewart Commonwealth.

Another noteworthy event is the return of the Jade Falcons to the borders of the Inner Sphere, accompanied by the Hell’s Horses, in 3086. The JFs reoccupy their former holdings of Von Strang’s World, Botany Bay and Gotterdammerung and add to them Placidia, Sigurd, Blackstone, Oberon VI and Butte Hold. The HHs take control of Manaringaine, Ferris, The Rock, Nyserta, Drask’s Den, Paulus Prime, Elissa, Crellacor, Gustrell, Star’s End, Santander V and Porthos. Both are gambling heavily that the IS powers will tolerate their presence rather than fight another war. For the next five years they keep a very low profile, not even raiding into the FedCom, FRR or DC. Then they start carrying out brief, small-scale raids which are conducted essentially as Trials of Possession for specific objectives, making it clear that they aren’t planning to permanently occupy any of the worlds that they hit. The Successor States decide that tolerating this comparatively civilized form of raiding is decidedly preferable to allowing new Pirate Kingdoms to take root in the area and make no move to dislodge them: lingering compassion over what the Clans endured at the hands of the WoB (on the part of sentimental types like Victor anyway) doubtless plays a part in this calculation too. Nobody seriously expects the Falcons and Horses to feel the slightest gratitude for this, though. And, of course, you can be sure they don't.

The Diamond Sharks establish themselves in the Chainelane Isles and gradually carve out an economic empire across the Inner Sphere and Near Periphery, much as in the canon timeline.

The most noteworthy event of all during this period is the Misogi (Purification) War. This is essentially just a delayed version of the conflict or the same name in the canon timeline, erupting in 3089 and lasting until 3094. Eventually Hohiro and Ninyu Kerai-Indrahar prevail. The Black Dragons (including Tai-shu Kiyamori Minamoto and the entire Council of Gems) are mercilessly purged.

The last decades of the 31st Century and the first decades of the 32nd see intermittent campaigns waged by the leading states of the former FWL to expand through the annexation of newly-independent worlds, accompanied by some predation upon the latter by the CC and the FedCom. Victor wants no part of this, but local commanders in the Tamarind March keep finding contrived justifications for snapping up a planet or two here, a planet or two there… over time, it all mounts up. OTOH, Victor, Hohiro and Corrine do continue to observe the prohibition on military action in the Terran Corridor/Core Worlds region by unspoken agreement even after the formal 20-year moratorium expires in 3102.

Also of some note during this time is the growth of a shadowy but seemingly widespread political movement on all the worlds that had formerly made up the WoB Core Protectorate, which, although it denies any Blakist agenda, asserts the desirability of a permanent reunification of the Core Worlds of the Inner Sphere under some kind of revived Terran Hegemony in all but name, free of the "oppressive" and "exploitative" rule of the Successor States. Attempts by the House intelligence agencies to infiltrate the movement meet with little success, although they do uncover the name of its reputed leader: a mysterious individual named Devlin Stone. Over time the movement begins to win converts on many more worlds that had once belonged to or bordered the TH.

In addition to all these significant events, there are a couple of significant non-events, namely the complete absence of any formal disarmament and demobilization treaties because there’s no RotS in existence to play the role of honest broker to the other Successor States. There is an informal agreement to go slowly with replacing combat units destroyed in the recent gruelling wars against first the Clans and then the WoB, but nobody is actually scrapping still-usable war machines, or going around retooling or mothballing arms factories or reducing RCTs to LCTs, and eventually every major power will even start allocating resources for the construction of at least a few new WarShips too - because they're all secretly deeply worried that the surviving Homeworld Clans will eventually come looking to exact a terrible revenge on the Inner Sphere for spawning the WoB by unleashing their own fleets without restraint. (So that’s a great big "nyah-nyah-nyah-nyah-nyah" to all of you WarShip-haters out there! ;))

[Perhaps I should state for the record at this point that I personally have no sympathy at all with the people who liked the way that the Republic Era in the canon timeline had supposedly made BattleMechs “rare and precious” again as of 3132 or thereabouts, because they’d previously considered that having all factories back to churning out ‘Mechs at more or less full capacity again from around 3060 or thereabouts (especially by comparison with the bare trickle they could manage during the Succession Wars) constituted “cheapening” them. Personally 3060 or thereabouts is my favourite era for playing in. If you want an unrealistic game where a single company of ‘Mechs can determine the fate of an entire planet, can’t you just play as mercs under contract to a Great House in either the 3025 or the 3039 era? Please don’t keep trying to inflict your preferences on those of us who don’t share them by forever egging TPTB at CGL on to use bloodbaths like the Jihad or contrived developments like the Republic Disarmament Treaties to reduce the size of the House militaries. When star empires go to war on the grand scale, I don’t want the fighting to involve big armies. I want it to involve huge armies, on the scale of the Napoleonic Era at least, along with WarShip battles and orbital bombardment. Anything less is totally unrealistic IMO.]


3100

A new century dawns. The Thirteenth Whitting Conference is held on Terra. At its conclusion the Council Members issue a joint statement to the assembled media expressing optimism that the new century will be far more peaceful than the old one.
« Last Edit: 23 November 2020, 17:06:08 by Hominid Mk II »
Ever felt that The Powers That Were at FASA, WizKids and FanPro never gave Victor Steiner-Davion and the Federated Commonwealth a fair shake in the canon timeline? Then you might be interested in my Victor Victorious AU at

https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=65976.0

.

Hominid Mk II

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  • Unofficial, sure. But better than nothing, right?
Re: Victor Victorious (Redux)
« Reply #4 on: 11 July 2019, 12:28:34 »
3110

Archon Prince Victor Steiner-Davion abdicates the throne of the FedCom at the age of 80. His son Simon (Kitsune) Steiner-Davion [genetically the same individual as Kitsune (Kurita) Fox in the canon timeline] ascends it at the age of 47. Low-level insurrections erupt on scattered worlds across the Skye and Draconis Marches. These had been anticipated and are all soon quelled, but a new mood of discontent now starts to make itself widely felt and it isn’t about to go away any time soon.


3111-13

The Fratricide War: With his health rapidily deteriorating, Sun-Tzu makes one final, desperate all-out effort to reconquer the SIC. Inevitably, Steiner-Davion support for the Allard-Liaos means that he fails disastrously and then has to endure a counterattack, which costs him the worlds of Palos, Yunnah, Ulan Bator, Quemoy, Raballa, Bora, Sarna, Sarmaxa, Rander, No Return, Relevow, Overton, Harloc, New Westin, Hustaing, Decus, Purvo, Sendalor, Housekarle, Homestead and Wright. Finally, he takes the desperate step of trying to bolster flagging CCAF morale by taking to the field in person. Sun-Tzu and his hated cousin Kai ultimately kill each other in single combat on (appropriately enough) the world of No Return. Their respective heirs-apparent, Chancellor-Designate Daoshen Liao(-Centrella) and Duke-Designate David (Lear) Allard-Liao agree to a ceasefire and eventually sign a peace treaty. (The chief, if not the only, reason why the naturally-belligerent Daoshen was prepared to go along with all this is because his miltary advisors had been convinced that the looming next wave of assaults by the SIC Military and their AFFC reinforcements could have been expected to include key worlds like Corey, Capella and Grand Base, whose loss coming on top of everything else could have meant irrevocable disaster.)

In the aftermath, Daoshen Liao(-Centrella) and David (Lear) Allard-Liao ascend to the thrones of their fallen fathers and become Chancellor of the CC and Duke of the SIC in their own right. Predictably, the Haseks complain loudly that Archon Prince Simon Steiner-Davion didn't take what they insist had been a golden opportunity to finally completely conquer the diminished CC once and for all.


3133

The twenty-fourth Whitting Conference is held on Terra. At its conclusion, a week-long celebration of the seventy-fifth anniversary of the creation of the Second Star League is proclaimed across all the current Member-States.

In an effort to demonstrate their continuing strength to their own people, the leading SSL Member-States embark upon token new WarShip-building programs. ComStar constructs the Suffren-class Alain Beresick and Birmingham. The FedCom constructs the Durandel-class Anduril and Hrunting and the Fox-class Koniz and Kelenfold. The DC constructs the Inazuma-class Autumn Clouds and Morning Frost.

Becoming nervous about FedCom intentions, the Marik-Stewart Commonweath and the Duchy of Tamarind-Abbey construct the Zechetinu III-class Thelyphonida and Schizomida and the Impavido-class Lydia and Caria respectively. Becoming outrightly paranoid about FedCom intentions, the CC constructs the Impavido-class Guizhou and Hubei. Justifiably becoming even more paranoid about CC intentions, the SIC constructs the Impavido-class Wei and Warlock. Becoming paranoid about M-SC intentions, the Regulan Fiefs constructs the Agamemnon-class Kirc Cameron-Jones and Titus Cameron-Jones.

Becoming nervous about Spheroid intentions, the Ghost Bears construct the Leviathan III-class Radstadt and the York-class Goito and Thule while the Snow Ravens construct the York-class Cerberus and Quatre Belle.


3137-43

Archon Prince Emeritus Victor Steiner-Davion dies aged 107 years. Within days, the FedCom Civil War breaks out as Archon Prince Simon Steiner-Davion finds himself faced with an all-out insurrection by his insane second cousin, Duke Caleb (Hasek-)Sandoval-Steiner-Davion of the Draconis March.

Once AFFC forces are fully committed to attempting to put down this revolt, the Skye and Tikonov Marches and the Addicks PDZ all declare themselves independent of the FedCom and join forces to create a new state called the Skye-Tikonov Alliance.

Simultaneously, the remainder of the Lyran Commonwealth and Federated Suns State Commands are convulsed by further insurrections sparked by the Brotherhood of Cincinnatus, the Citizens for Davion Purity and probably more others than you could shake a stick at.

Before the Kuritas can decide how to react to this unfolding chaos in the FedCom, they find themselves faced with a crisis of their own when insurrectionists declare the independence of the Dieron Military District from the DC as the Dieron Hegemony. The resulting struggle between rebel and loyalist elements of the DCMS on those worlds is brutal, but ends with astonishing speed in victory for the former. The widespread damage caused to military and civilian infrastructure in the crossfire is especially severe on the world of Dieron itself, prompting the rebel regime to declare the world of Vega their provisional capital instead.

Not long after that, the worlds of Yorii, Thorin, Chara, New Earth, Rigil Kentarus, Alula Australis, Graham IV, Sirius, Procyon, Carver V, Epsilon Eridani, Bryant, New Home, Keid and Caph all secede in turn from the Skye-Tikonov Alliance to form a mini-realm called the Republic of the Core, headed by a charismatic old man calling himself Exarch Devlin Stone.

Not long after that, the worlds of Asta, Altair, Dieron, Saffel and Fomalhaut secede in turn from the Dieron Hegemony (citing alleged neglect by the provisional government on Vega as justification) and transfer their allegiance to the Republic of the Core.

Not long after that, a mass insurrection seemingly erupts out of nowhere on Terra and overthrows the rule of ComStar (which follows the lead of Primus Malcolm Buhl by offering remarkably little resistance before capitulating). A provisional government is formed which petitions the Republic of the Core for membership. Not only is this granted, but Terra is swiftly made the new capital. Most of the Com Guards stationed on Terra promptly transfer their allegiance to the Republic as the Core Guards and become the core of its fledgling military.

In all but name, the Core Protectorate of decades before is now fully reborn.

Not long after that, the Skye-Tikonov Alliance and Dieron Hegemony both launch assaults on the worlds which have seceded from them to form the Republic of the Core. The attackers are swiftly routed and forced to withdraw by decisive action on the part of the recently-renamed Core Guards now serving the Republic. In the aftermath, the Dieron Hegemony changes its name to the Vegan Hegemony and all three states then formally extend each other diplomatic recognition. They petition for membership in the Star League but are ignored.

And then a mysterious Blackout shuts down the entire HPG Grid, sparking accusations and counter-accusations that trigger border clashes across the Inner Sphere.

(Decades of covert Blakist infiltrations and manipulations are all coming to fruition at last.)

The next few years see unremitting conflict, beginning when Caleb (Hasek-)Sandoval-Steiner-Davion launches an unprovoked invasion of the DC in the belief that this will rally the people of the Federated Suns behind his banner. It doesn’t. The rebellious Draconis March forces find themselves locked in a brutal struggle with Black Dragons who’ve infiltrated most of the DCMS units stationed in the border Prefectures over the preceding decades. Decades of not-so-secret spoiling for a fight on both sides are finally vented in a horrific bloodbath in which both sides slaughter one another with reckless abandon and neither pays much heed to the plight of innocent civilians caught in the crossfire.

Eventually the two warring sides take such a toll on each other that their governments decide it’s time to step in and force them apart. AFFC forces from the Crucis March and loyalist DCMS forces are able to work together well enough to let them slowly grind down the Draconis March rebels and the Black Dragons between them. The conflict reaches its bloody final end when Caleb dies in battle against loyalist DCMS forces on DC territory. The pre-war border is subsequently restored.

The Capellan, Tamarind and Tamar Marches all take advantage of the lack of oversight from New Avalon and Tharkad to launch unsanctioned invasions of the CC, the former FWL and the FRR respectively, in pursuit of longstanding territorial ambitions on the part of their power-hungry March Lords. All of them find that they’ve bitten off more than they can chew and all of them are ultimately forced to withdraw behind their previous borders. The heroic death of Captain-General Anson Marik of the Marik-Stewart Commonwealth in battle with the FedCom invaders outrages people across the former FWL and drives them to offer their support against the common enemy to his son and successor Kenyon Marik to an extent that would previously have been unthinkable. Captain-General Jessica Halas of the Oriente Protectorate emerges as the clear leader of the resulting grand alliance after Kenyon stands aside in her favour following his political marriage to her daughter Nikol Halas. Duke Fontaine Marik of the Duchy of Tamarind-Abbey and the leadership of the Rim Commonality climb aboard the bandwagon too and the rebirth of the FWL is proclaimed in 3039. Captain-General Lester Cameron-Jones of the Regulan Fiefs flatly rejects an invitation to join. Duke Ari Humphreys of Andurien reacts by marrying Majestrix Ilsa (Liao-)Centrella of the MoC and moving his realm decisively into the CC sphere of influence.

After the failure of their unprovoked aggressions against their neighbours, the Tamarind and Tamar Marches feel a need to demonstrate that they can still project military power effectively and so reluctantly throw their weight behind the Donegal March in its thus-far largely unsuccessful efforts to reconquer the Skye March. The Capellan March likewise reluctantly decides to offer belated support to the Crucis March in its efforts to reconquer the Tikonov March following the defeat of the last of the Draconis March rebels. Assaulted from both sides, the Skye-Tikonov Alliance is also methodically ground down and destroyed.

Meanwhile again, the DCMS ruthlessly grinds down and destroys the Vegan Hegemony.

By the time the FedCom and DC are ready to launch a final joint campaign to grind down and destroy the Republic of the Core, their succession of hard-won victories has left them bloodied and exhausted but still determined. This final campaign is expected to be challenging but still comparatively brief… until it's learned the hard way that a mysterious barrier dubbed Fortress Core is now in place which is preventing all hyperspace transit into (and presumably out of) the Core Worlds, leaving the upstart Republic out of reach indefinitely.

In the aftermath, the FedCom and DC abandon all thought of further attempts at retaking the Core Worlds for the foreseeable future. They have more than enough troubles already. The Draconis, Skye and Tikonov Marches and the Dieron Military District have been physically devastated by five years of war, as have large areas of the Benjamin and Galedon MDs. The ruthless crushing of the self-proclaimed liberation struggles has earned Houses Steiner-Davion and Kurita the undying hatred of many of their subjects, who will likely be highly receptive to any new mass movement that may seem to promise them liberation. The way the Federated Suns and Lyran Commonwealth State Commands both had to effectively fight alone until late in the conflict has allowed those determined to find fault with the FedCom on principle to again call into question its ability to perform its most important function, as a military alliance. Decades of FedCom propaganda about its supposed status as a beacon of liberalism have been utterly negated by the naked ambition and greed demonstrated by its March Lords and many have begun to see it as nothing more than a monolithic force for oppression. The abdication of an old and tired Simon in favour of his son Victor Steiner-Davion II following the end of hostilities has done relatively little to change the fact that public antipathy to the royal family is at an all-time high, with many bigots arguing that they’re conspiring with their Kurita cousins to enslave the entire Inner Sphere. Meanwhile, rumours are soon circulating that the Black Dragons are once again plotting against the Chrysanthemum Throne in the wake of the loss of face Coordinator Vincent Kurita has suffered.

The various factions, anxiously once again attempting to demonstrate their continuing strengh to their own people, embark on more token WarShip-building programs, resulting in the construction of the Mjolnir-class Asgard and Vanaheim, the Avalon-class Victor Steiner-Davion and Peter Steiner-Davion, the Kirishima-class Theodore and Hohiro II, the Agamemnon-class Achilles and Hector and the Fredasa-class Bjorn Jorgensson, Ragnar Magnusson, Stephen McKenna and Mitchell Avellar.

Meanwhile, in the darkness of the Deep Periphery, something is stirring….

To be continued… ?

 - - - - - -

All the changed background history has a significant cumulative effect on BattleMech design trends after the mid-3050s.

It starts in a small way. The failure (or more accurately the abrupt abandonment) of Operation Guerrero causes a loss of morale in FWL military circles (even though only mercs rather than FWLM line units had been deployed), leading to a less adventurous spirit and a more conservative approach to the procurement of new weapon systems and upgraded ‘Mech designs by the office of the Quartermaster General. This has a number of knock-on effects. New weapons like ER Medium and Small Lasers and Streak SRM-4s and SRM-6s are still readily accepted because the technology is already familiar from ER Large Lasers and Streak SRM-2s, while LB 2-X, LB 5-X and LB 20-X ACs and Ultra AC/2s, AC/10s and AC/20s likewise have precedents in LB 10-Xs and Ultra AC/5s. But entirely new weapons like MRMs are met with a cooler reception. This mentality means that, for example, if an existing design originally mounted a standard AC/20 you’d probably choose to upgrade it with an LB 20-X or an Ultra AC/20 (or maybe a Gauss Rifle, as there are existing precedents for that), not with something totally different like a Thunderbolt-20.

[A typical example of how all this works in practice is that Irian BattleMechs Unlimited decide against using the newly developed and still unproven Light Gauss Rifle as the primary weapon on their new HER-6S model of the Hermes II, opting to use a tried and tested LB 10-X AC instead. (Although they do eventually introduce another model, the HER-6M, which does use a LGR.) This illustrates how, in general, designers are discouraged from branching out too far from the precedents set by earlier upgrades to existing designs when proposing further upgrades.]

By and large this lack of enthusiasm for innovation slows the deployment of new technologies in the FWL across the board, but there’s one odd and significant exception: the faster development of X-Pulse Lasers. These are seen as a logical progression from conventional Pulse Lasers and the widespread enthusiasm for ER Medium and Small Lasers following their introduction has helped to make attitudes to new laser weapons in general something of an exception to the overall trend. This combines with the hesitation about using anything too radical to re-focus the attention of designers with an inherent urge to innovate in their direction, to the exclusion of other things.

[Kong Interstellar Corporation take the lead in this by introducing a new model of the Ostsol similar to the existing OTL-5M, but with Large X-Pulse Lasers replacing the conventional Large Pulse Lasers.]

Since the FWL is rapidly reverting to its previous role of arms dealer to the rest of the Inner Sphere, these trends have a ripple effect on the militaries of other states. If a FedCom manufacturer sees the AFFC placing large orders for unimaginative upgrades of established ‘Mech designs with FWL manufacturers, it’s only natural for them to stick with what seems to work by offering unimaginative products themselves, rather than taking the greater commercial risk involved in innovating. The possibility that the AFFC may only be buying this merchandise from the FWL manufacturers because it’s all they’re offering will be considered, but it won’t be thought advisable to assume that it’s true and try to compete by offering more innovative products.

Besides X-Pulse Lasers, Light Autocannons, Machine Gun Arrays and ER Flamers are all deployed a few years earlier as well, due to the absence of the disruption that would have resulted from a Civil War in the FedCom. OTOH, deployment of the Heavy Gauss Rifle is greatly slowed by a personal lack of enthusiasm on the part of Victor (unhappy with the decreased damage at longer ranges), which in turn pushes Defiance Industries into faster development of the Improved HGR. The latter meets with the approval of Victor (and then some!), so Defiance fast-track it into mass production as they seek to "make up for lost time".

All of this combines with the absence of the FedCom Civil War to make the climate totally wrong for anything like Project Phoenix to succeed. There are no "Reseen" designs in this timeline. (Yes, the real reason for this bit is that I personally hate them!)

Another way in which the far less eventful history of the period 3057-3067 slows the rate of innovation is with regard to fusion engines. The existing trend for putting XL Engines on the majority of new and upgraded designs largely continues. With no independent Lyran Alliance to steal the technology for Light Engines from Wolf’s Dragoons and then sell it to the WoB, there’s no mad binge of slapping them on everything in sight in Steiner space and the Blue Flame and White Flame are designed with XL Engines instead. The Dragoons themselves continue to remain indifferent to the technology. It doesn’t start to proliferate until an engineer who worked on the project and retains a personal enthusiasm for it quits Dragoon employ in frustration and heads off to Solaris VII to take up a job with the Vining Engineering and Salvage Team, bringing his knowledge with him. VEST introduce the Light Engine to the Arenas with the Aquagladius. From there the technology finds its way into the hands of the R&D establishments of the Successor States. Then, a little later than in the canon timeline, the Lyrans are inspired by the space savings Light Engines offer compared to XLs to come up with the idea of the Compact Engine. The usual efficiency of WoB espionage enables them to pirate both technologies in short order, and in fact their first high-profile deployment is with the Celestial Series OmniMechs in the early 3070s.

On the plus side in innovation terms, however, the continued unity of the FedCom means that the intellectual powerhouse of the NAIS remains in regular contact with the research departments of major weapons manufacturers in Steiner space. Cross-fertilization of ideas leads somebody at Defiance Industries to stumble upon the same improved focusing techniques Clan Wolverine used to create the Enhanced ER PPC nearly 250 years before. The NER PPC is widely deployed across the FedCom within a few years and the other Successor States are able to copy the technology before long. (You can imagine how furious the DC are at having been beaten to this particular breakthrough!) Assuming that the Blood conspiracy really do exist, this is just one more reason for them to hate the FedCom – their one unique invention isn’t their exclusive property anymore. (Technically that was already the case – the Clan ER PPC is effectively a hybrid of NER PPC and Snub-Nose PPC – but since when have the WoB been noted for the ability to make an objective assessment of anything?)
« Last Edit: 23 November 2020, 17:07:09 by Hominid Mk II »
Ever felt that The Powers That Were at FASA, WizKids and FanPro never gave Victor Steiner-Davion and the Federated Commonwealth a fair shake in the canon timeline? Then you might be interested in my Victor Victorious AU at

https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=65976.0

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Hominid Mk II

  • Warrant Officer
  • *
  • Posts: 404
  • Unofficial, sure. But better than nothing, right?
Re: Victor Victorious (Redux)
« Reply #5 on: 11 July 2019, 12:29:05 »
Finally, the following is a complete list of all WarShips last known (or at least believed) to still be in service in the Inner Sphere, Near Periphery, Deep Periphery or Clan Homeworlds as of the year 3145 or thereabouts:

Leviathan II
  Rasalhague (Clan Ghost Bear [Flagship])

Leviathan III
  Radstadt (Clan Ghost Bear)

Newgrange III [YardShip]
  Blake's Mercy (ComStar)

McKenna
  Lei Kung (Clan Goliath Scorpion [Flagship])
  Sovereign Right (Clan Star Adder [Flagship])
  Werewolf (Clan Wolf [previously Clan Wolf-in-Exile] [Flagship])
  Second Coming (Cobra Imperio [Flagship])

Texas
  Gungnir [formerly Falcon's Nest] (Federated Commonwealth)

Potemkin
  Armageddon (Clan Hell's Horses)
  Bonaventure (Clan Snow Raven)
  Eden Rose (Clan Snow Raven)
  Full Moon (Clan Wolf [previously Clan Wolf-in-Exile])
  Wisdom of the Ages (Cobra Imperio)
  Vision of Truth (ComStar)

Potemkin II [ArcShip]
  Tsunami (Clan Sea Fox [IlKhanate] [Flagship])
  Kraken (Clan Sea Fox [Fox Khanate])
  Atlantean [formerly Red Tide] (Clan Sea Fox [Skate Khanate])
  Poseidon (Clan Sea Fox [Spina Khanate])
  Titanic (Clan Sea Fox [Tiburon Khanate])

Potemkin III [CargoShip]
  Abyssal [formerly Treachery] (Clan Sea Fox [Skate Khanate])
  Voidswimmer [formerly Wild Swan] (Clan Sea Fox [Spina Khanate])

Mjolnir
  Yggdrasil (Federated Commonwealth [Flagship])
  Asgard (Federated Commonwealth)
  Vanaheim (Federated Commonwealth)

Yamato
  Nagato (Draconis Combine [Flagship])

Nightlord
  Lynn McKenna [formerly Terror of the Deep] (Clan Snow Raven)
  Absolute Truth (Clan Star Adder)

Kaga
  Mount Niitaka (Draconis Combine)

Feng Huang II
  Aleisha Kris (Capellan Confederation [Flagship])
  Androsar (Capellan Confederation)
  Tarlak (Capellan Confederation)
  Sundermann Rhys (St. Ives Compact [Flagship])

Thera
  Corinth (Word of Blake [Flagship]) [Disappeared following Blakist War.
    Current whereabouts unknown.]
  Santorini (Free Worlds League [Oriente Protectorate] [Flagship])
  Delos (Free Worlds League [Regulan Fiefs] [Flagship])

Tharkad
  Invincible (Federated Commonwealth)

Du Shi Wang II
  Quicksilver Mongoose (Clan Burrock [Flagship])
    [Stationed permanently in orbit around Tanis in Tanis system.]

Cameron
  Blood of the Coyote (Clan Coyote [Flagship])
  Sleipnir (Clan Hell's Horses [Flagship])
  Kerensky's Hope (Clan Snow Raven [Flagship])
  Ice Storm (Clan Snow Raven)
  Invisible Truth (ComStar [Flagship])

Sovetskii Soyuz
  Damascus (Clan Goliath Scorpion)
  Budapest (Clan Goliath Scorpion)
  Storm Crow (Clan Snow Raven)
  Vigilant Guardian (Word of Blake) [Disappeared following Blakist War.
    Current whereabouts unknown.]

Sovetskii Soyuz II [CargoShip]
  Talismantia [formerly Nagasawa] (Clan Sea Fox [Spina Khanate])

Liberator
  Spirit of the Sky (Clan Coyote)
  Victoria Ward (Clan Wolf)

Agamemnon
  Hippolyta (Word of Blake) [Disappeared following Blakist War. Current
    whereabouts unknown.]
  Aineas (Free Worlds League [Duchy of Tamarind-Abbey] [Flagship])
  Menelaus (Free Worlds League [Marik-Stewart Commonwealth] [Flagship])
  Achilles (Free Worlds League [Marik-Stewart Commonwealth])
  Hector (Free Worlds League [Marik-Stewart Commonwealth])
  Kirc Cameron-Jones (Free Worlds League [Regulan Fiefs])
  Titus Cameron-Jones (Free Worlds League [Regulan Fiefs])

Black Lion II
  Rocinante (Clan Blood Spirit [Flagship])
  Jade Aerie (Clan Jade Falcon [Flagship])
  Stealthy Kill (Clan Wolf)
  Streaking Mist (Jaguar Bandit Group) [Disappeared following Genocide
    War. Current whereabouts unknown.]
  Blake's Strength (ComStar)

Kirishima
  Takashi (Draconis Combine)
  Miyogi (Draconis Combine)
  Theodore (Draconis Combine)
  Hohiro II (Draconis Combine)

Quixote
  Vengeance (Taurian Concordat [Flagship])

Volga II [CargoShip]
  Maelstrom (Clan Sea Fox [IlKhanate])
  Megalodon (Clan Sea Fox [Fox Khanate])
  Liberator (Clan Sea Fox [Tiburon Khanate])

Conqueror
  Conqueror (Clan Snow Raven)
  Ark Royal (Clan Snow Raven)

Kimagure
  Admiral Russell Nga (Clan Burrock)
    [Stationed permanently in orbit around Alexandria in Tanis system.]

Avalon
  Lucien Davion (Federated Commonwealth)
  Robert Davion (Federated Commonwealth)
  Hanse Davion (Federated Commonwealth)
  Victor Steiner-Davion (Federated Commonwealth)
  Peter Steiner-Davion (Federated Commonwealth)

Congress
  Bernlad (Clan Goliath Scorpion)
  Bucephalus (Clan Hell's Horses)
  Kerensky's Pride (Clan Jade Falcon)
  True Vision (Clan Nova Cat [Flagship])
  Magpie (Clan Snow Raven)
  Rogue (Clan Wolf)
  Cleansing Fire (ComStar)
  Eisenfaust [formerly Green Lantern] (Federated Commonwealth)

Riga
  Hetherington (Clan Burrock)
    [Stationed permanently in orbit around Stacha in Tanis system.]

Aegis II
  Corona Austrina (Clan Goliath Scorpion)
  Ares's Might (Clan Star Adder)
  Stellar Serpent (Clan Star Adder)
  Jade Talon (Clan Jade Falcon)
  Red Talon (Clan Jade Falcon)
  Promise (Clan Nova Cat)
  Blade (Clan Nova Cat)
  Path of Honor (Clan Nova Cat)
  Remembrance (Clan Nova Cat)
  Lord Death (Clan Snow Raven)
  Swift Justice (ComStar)
  Alexander (Wolf's Dragoons [Flagship])

Lola III
  Red Knight (Clan Hell's Horses)
  Hunter (Clan Nova Cat)
  Hagar (Clan Star Adder)
  Warlock (Clan Star Adder)
  Cataclysm (Cobra Imperio)
  Ranger (ComStar)
  Strength Through Adversity (ComStar)
  Snow Breeze [formerly Blizzard] (Draconis Combine)
  Nelson (Wolf's Dragoons)

Lola IV [CargoShip]
  Caleuche [formerly Space Hunter] (Clan Sea Fox [Tiburon Khanate])

Kyushu
  Draconis Rift (Draconis Combine)
  Victory at Wolcott (Draconis Combine)
  Dieron Star (Draconis Combine)
  Pride of New Samarkand (Draconis Combine)

Eagle
  Lancelot (Free Worlds League [Oriente Protectorate])
    [Assigned as escort vessel to Thera Class Santorini.]
  Galahad (Free Worlds League [Oriente Protectorate])
    [Assigned as escort vessel to Thera Class Santorini.]
  Leodegrance (Free Worlds League [Regulan Fiefs])
    [Assigned as escort vessel to Thera Class Delos.]
  Palamedes (Free Worlds League [Regulan Fiefs])
    [Assigned as escort vessel to Thera Class Delos.]

Durandel
  Balingore (Federated Commonwealth)
  Anduril (Federated Commonwealth)
  Hrunting (Federated Commonwealth)

Essex II
  Canis [formerly Marseilles] (Clan Coyote)
  White Claw (Clan Ghost Bear)
  White Fang (Clan Ghost Bear)
  Marshal Ney [formerly Tracy] (Clan Snow Raven)
  Brandenburg Crusader (ComStar)
  Hammerstrike (ComStar)
  Dark Claw (Draconis Combine)
  Raven (Free Worlds League [Marik-Stewart Commonwealth])
  Schrack (Free Worlds League [Marik-Stewart Commonwealth])

Dante
  Bordeaux (ComStar)

York
  Stooping Kite (Clan Blood Spirit)
  Broken Sea (Clan Coyote)
  Goito (Clan Ghost Bear)
  Thule (Clan Ghost Bear)
  Cerberus (Clan Snow Raven)
  Quatre Belle (Clan Snow Raven)
  Exodus Sentinel (Clan Star Adder)
  Exodus Avenger (Clan Star Adder)
  Protector (Cobra Imperio)
  Nebulous (Cobra Imperio)

Faslane [YardShip]
  Dover (ComStar) [Assigned to Luyten 68-28 and the Com Guard 1st
    Fleet.]
  Portsmouth (ComStar) [Assigned to Luyten 68-28 and the Com Guard 1st
    Fleet.]
  Plymouth (ComStar) [Assigned to Ross 248 and the Com Guard 2nd Fleet.]
  Dun Laoghaire (ComStar) [Assigned to Ross 248 and the Com Guard 2nd
    Fleet.]
  Rosslare (ComStar) [Assigned to Explorer Corps Columbus facility in
    the Deep Periphery.]
  Glamorgan (ComStar) [Assigned to Explorer Corps Columbus facility in
    the Deep Periphery.]

Suffren
  Manchester (ComStar)
  Alain Beresick (ComStar)
  Birmingham (ComStar)

Whirlwind
  Emerald Tornado (Clan Jade Falcon)
  William Adams (Clan Snow Raven)
  Drake (Clan Snow Raven)
  Fire Fang (ComStar)

Tatsumaki
  Lair of Mighty Wyrms (Draconis Combine)

Impavido
  Xizang (Capellan Confederation)
  Guizhou (Capellan Confederation)
  Hubei (Capellan Confederation)
  Wei (St. Ives Compact)
  Warlock (St. Ives Compact)
  Lydia (Free Worlds League [Duchy of Tamarind-Abbey])
  Caria (Free Worlds League [Duchy of Tamarind-Abbey])
  Phrygia (Free Worlds League [Duchy of Andurien] [Flagship])

Vincent
  Relentless Pursuit (Clan Coyote)
  Muninn (Clan Snow Raven)
  Vandenberg (Taurian Concordat)

Samarkand II
  Beijing (Clan Goliath Scorpion) [K-F Drive destroyed. Stranded in
    Roche system.]

Carrack [Transport]
  Den Mother (Clan Ghost Bear)
  Yggdrasil (Clan Ghost Bear)
  Golden Clydesdale (Clan Hell's Horses)
  Void (Clan Nova Cat)

Carrack II [Merchant]
  Far Star (Clan Nova Cat)
  Enlightened Path (Clan Nova Cat)
  Pathfinder (Clan Nova Cat)
  Bright Star (Clan Nova Cat)

Carrack III [CargoShip]
  Coriolis (Clan Sea Fox [IlKhanate])
  Taniwha (Clan Sea Fox [Fox Khanate])
  Tethys (Clan Sea Fox [Skate Khanate])

Carrack IV [CargoShip]
  Cataract (Clan Sea Fox [IlKhanate])
  Torrential (Clan Sea Fox [IlKhanate])
  Riptide (Clan Sea Fox [IlKhanate])
  Jormungandr (Clan Sea Fox [Fox Khanate])
  Cetus (Clan Sea Fox [Fox Khanate])
  Tiktaalik (Clan Sea Fox [Fox Khanate])
  Thalassa (Clan Sea Fox [Skate Khanate])
  Pelagic (Clan Sea Fox [Skate Khanate])
  Oceanus (Clan Sea Fox [Skate Khanate])
  Silentshark (Clan Sea Fox [Spina Khanate])
  Starfox (Clan Sea Fox [Spina Khanate])
  Swiftswimmer (Clan Sea Fox [Spina Khanate])
  Argo (Clan Sea Fox [Tiburon Khanate])
  Naglfar (Clan Sea Fox [Tiburon Khanate])
  Matahourua (Clan Sea Fox [Tiburon Khanate])

Fox
  Indefatigable (Federated Commonwealth)
  Murmansk (Federated Commonwealth)
  Brest (Federated Commonwealth)
  New Syrtis (Federated Commonwealth)
  Robinson (Federated Commonwealth)
  Kathil (Federated Commonwealth)
  Admiral Corinne Donnings (Federated Commonwealth)
  Admiral Michael Saille (Federated Commonwealth)
  Robert Marsden (Federated Commonwealth)
  Katherine Steiner (Federated Commonwealth)
  Ian McQuiston (Federated Commonwealth)
  Koniz (Federated Commonwealth)
  Kelenfold (Federated Commonwealth)

Inazuma
  Winds of Heaven (Draconis Combine)
  Amber Lotus (Draconis Combine)
  Autumn Clouds (Draconis Combine)
  Morning Frost (Draconis Combine)

Zechetinu II
  Excalibur [formerly Ixodida] (Federated Commonwealth)
  Acari (Free Worlds League [Oriente Protectorate])
  Kustarachnae (Free Worlds League [Oriente Protectorate])
  Haptopoda (Free Worlds League [Regulan Fiefs])

Zechetinu III
  Thelyphonida (Free Worlds League [Marik-Stewart Commonwealth])
  Schizomida (Free Worlds League [Marik-Stewart Commonwealth])

Fredasa
  Bjorn Jorgensson (Clan Ghost Bear)
  Ragnar Magnusson (Clan Ghost Bear)
  Spirit Sight (Clan Nova Cat)
  Kutkh [formerly Swift Strike] (Clan Snow Raven)
  Stephen McKenna (Clan Snow Raven)
  Mitchell Avellar (Clan Snow Raven)
  Vicious Fang (Clan Star Adder)
  Arcadian Asp (Clan Star Adder)

Bug-Eye [Surveillance]
  Adean Dulcimer (Interstellar Expeditions)



ComStar = 14
Word of Blake = 3
Federated Commonwealth = 28
  Federated Suns = 17
  Lyran Commonwealth = 11
Draconis Combine = 19
Capellan Confederation = 6
St. Ives Compact = 3
Free Worlds League = 22
  Duchy of Tamarind-Abbey = 3
  Marik-Stewart Commonwealth = 7
  Oriente Protectorate = 5
  Duchy of Andurien = 1
  Regulan Fiefs = 6
Taurian Concordat = 2

Wolf's Dragoons = 2


Clan Hell's Horses = 5
Clan Jade Falcon = 5
Clan Wolf = 5
Clan Ghost Bear = 10
Clan Nova Cat = 8
Clan Sea Fox = 0
Clan Snow Raven = 19

Clan Blood Spirit = 2
Clan Burrock = 3
Clan Coyote = 5
Clan Goliath Scorpion = 6
Clan Star Adder = 10

Cobra Imperio = 5
« Last Edit: 23 November 2020, 17:08:26 by Hominid Mk II »
Ever felt that The Powers That Were at FASA, WizKids and FanPro never gave Victor Steiner-Davion and the Federated Commonwealth a fair shake in the canon timeline? Then you might be interested in my Victor Victorious AU at

https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=65976.0

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gladius

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Okay, that’s ... a lot.

I especially like the way a mis jumping SLDF warship appears out of nowhere and then just ... vanishes.

I appreciate the idea of starting with a single small change (the colour on maps? Weird, but works) ... but you keep tossing more and more changes that would be themselves PODs in any other fic.

I’ll admit I got lost partway through, and skipped ahead but ... yeah.

Lots of work went into this, but honestly it feels too busy.

I would suggest slowing down, cutting back on the ‘coincidences’ and break it up with some narrative scenes: even if it’s just snapshots, show us the characters, rather than just events.

David CGB

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Lots of work went into this, but honestly it feels too busy.

I would suggest slowing down, cutting back on the ‘coincidences’ and break it up with some narrative scenes: even if it’s just snapshots, show us the characters, rather than just events.
Agreed
Federated Suns fan forever, Ghost Bear Fan since 1992, and as a Ghost Bear David Bekker star captain (in an Alt TL Loremaster)

Hominid Mk II

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Okay, that’s ... a lot.

I especially like the way a mis jumping SLDF warship appears out of nowhere and then just ... vanishes.

Huh?

I appreciate the idea of starting with a single small change (the colour on maps? Weird, but works) ... but you keep tossing more and more changes that would be themselves PODs in any other fic.

If Herb Beas could get away with that in Empires Aflame, why shouldn't I at least try to get away with it here?  :thumbsup:

I’ll admit I got lost partway through, and skipped ahead

Shame on you!  :ticked:

but ... yeah.

Lots of work went into this, but honestly it feels too busy.

I would suggest slowing down, cutting back on the ‘coincidences’ and break it up with some narrative scenes: even if it’s just snapshots, show us the characters, rather than just events.

Um, I actually don't think I understand exactly what it is you mean by all of that?  ???
Ever felt that The Powers That Were at FASA, WizKids and FanPro never gave Victor Steiner-Davion and the Federated Commonwealth a fair shake in the canon timeline? Then you might be interested in my Victor Victorious AU at

https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=65976.0

.

drakensis

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I appreciate the idea of starting with a single small change (the colour on maps? Weird, but works) ... but you keep tossing more and more changes that would be themselves PODs in any other fic.
Maps can be very political.

In my State of the Union fic, where the F-C reunites, the new map represents the F-C with Steiner Blue background but marks the stars and captions them in Davion Gold. (Something I'd find quite difficult or time-consuming to actually do so don't ask to see the map).
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HABeas2

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If Herb Beas could get away with that in Empires Aflame, why shouldn't I at least try to get away with it here?  :thumbsup:

Get away with what?

- Herb

cawest

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man what a great timeline. 

Hominid Mk II

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man what a great timeline.

You're much too kind, cawest!
« Last Edit: 19 July 2019, 07:56:17 by Hominid Mk II »
Ever felt that The Powers That Were at FASA, WizKids and FanPro never gave Victor Steiner-Davion and the Federated Commonwealth a fair shake in the canon timeline? Then you might be interested in my Victor Victorious AU at

https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=65976.0

.

Hominid Mk II

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Get away with what?

- Herb

I was assuming until now that this was an ironic question, but in case it isn't... no offence meant or anything, Herb, but if we're honest, didn't you do in Empires Aflame pretty much exactly what Gladius apparently wishes I hadn't done here: add into your AU further points of divergence from the history of the canon timeline, after the original one, which don't obviously at least seem to have been made more likely to happen because of the original one having already happened beforehand?
Ever felt that The Powers That Were at FASA, WizKids and FanPro never gave Victor Steiner-Davion and the Federated Commonwealth a fair shake in the canon timeline? Then you might be interested in my Victor Victorious AU at

https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=65976.0

.

HABeas2

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I was assuming until now that this was an ironic question, but in case it isn't... no offence meant or anything, Herb, but if we're honest, didn't you do in Empires Aflame pretty much exactly what Gladius apparently wishes I hadn't done here: add into your AU further points of divergence from the history of the canon timeline, after the original one, which don't obviously at least seem to have been made more likely to happen because of the original one having already happened beforehand?

Ah. Actually, in many cases, I was going for a bit of "fate tries to correct itself, but some things will change regardless" approach, so a lot of events follow what they did in the main line somewhat, but others go radically different because of the original change. It's not a proper alternate timeline if you change one thing and somehow mandate that nothing else changes because of it. There were some oddities, such as us still getting some characters whose parentage/origins are quite different than that of the prime setting--characters such as Victor Focht (no Hanse & Melissa means Victor shouldn't be, but fate did its thing and had him show up as Anastasius' spawn somehow), and Katherine Steiner II (born this time of the odd union of Melissa Steiner and Richard Whitman), or us still getting Avitue/Mary Durant despite there never having been a Word of Blake origin for her (instead, she comes from Loki).

I was going for the Star Trek mirror-verse vibe as well, which always found ways to let the characters encounter their mirror versions, even when the changes that created the different settings should have prevented that. (How do the mirror-Terrans still wind up with Bashir, who was a genetically enhanced human from a well-off family, when humankind is a slave race to the Klingon-Romulan-Cardassian Alliance by that time? Eh, maybe the Romulans turned him into a lab experiment of their own? Sure, why not?)

Um, so anyway, that's why some alterations are there that you'd not expect from just changing one instance. I say, let's just write it all off as a Butterfly Effect.

- Herb

Hominid Mk II

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I say, let's just write it all off as a Butterfly Effect.

I couldn't agree more. (Or at least, I can hardly argue with you about this now that I've been and gorn and dunnit meself! I hope I don't have it in me to be that much of a hypocrite!)
Ever felt that The Powers That Were at FASA, WizKids and FanPro never gave Victor Steiner-Davion and the Federated Commonwealth a fair shake in the canon timeline? Then you might be interested in my Victor Victorious AU at

https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=65976.0

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HABeas2

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I couldn't agree more. (Or at least, I can hardly argue with you about this now that I've been and gorn and dunnit meself! I hope I don't have it in me to be that much of a hypocrite!)

In my life, I've discovered that hypocrisy is just the state of being human. We ALL bend have a tendency to bend our own rules and beliefs if they get in the way of something we want.

So I rarely even use the word anymore.

 8)

- Herb

Sir Chaos

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In my life, I've discovered that hypocrisy is just the state of being human. We ALL bend have a tendency to bend our own rules and beliefs if they get in the way of something we want.

So I rarely even use the word anymore.

 8)

- Herb

So true.

Better reserve the word for more nefarious things than telling a good story.  ;)
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Hominid Mk II

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Deleted.
« Last Edit: 23 November 2020, 11:04:20 by Hominid Mk II »
Ever felt that The Powers That Were at FASA, WizKids and FanPro never gave Victor Steiner-Davion and the Federated Commonwealth a fair shake in the canon timeline? Then you might be interested in my Victor Victorious AU at

https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=65976.0

.

Hominid Mk II

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Just in case anyone's still interested even after all this time, I've just made yet another couple of edits! I've renamed the now-disbanded (as of 3138) Com Guards as the re-branded Core Guards. (And I'm kicking myself for not thinking of something so simple long before now!)
« Last Edit: 22 November 2020, 05:26:24 by Hominid Mk II »
Ever felt that The Powers That Were at FASA, WizKids and FanPro never gave Victor Steiner-Davion and the Federated Commonwealth a fair shake in the canon timeline? Then you might be interested in my Victor Victorious AU at

https://bg.battletech.com/forums/index.php?topic=65976.0

.

Hominid Mk II

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Re: Victor Victorious (Redux)
« Reply #20 on: 22 November 2020, 07:36:58 »
Yet another edit - and it's the biggest one yet! I've renamed this thread from "The return of my Victor Victorious AU - a decade on from the last version!" to simply "Victor Victorious (Redux)".
Ever felt that The Powers That Were at FASA, WizKids and FanPro never gave Victor Steiner-Davion and the Federated Commonwealth a fair shake in the canon timeline? Then you might be interested in my Victor Victorious AU at

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mikecj

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Re: Victor Victorious (Redux)
« Reply #21 on: 24 November 2020, 23:51:04 »
Interesting, thanks for sharing
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Hominid Mk II

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Re: Victor Victorious (Redux)
« Reply #22 on: 25 November 2020, 17:22:04 »
Interesting, thanks for sharing

You're welcome!
Ever felt that The Powers That Were at FASA, WizKids and FanPro never gave Victor Steiner-Davion and the Federated Commonwealth a fair shake in the canon timeline? Then you might be interested in my Victor Victorious AU at

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consequences

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Re: Victor Victorious (Redux)
« Reply #23 on: 26 November 2020, 12:15:22 »
"Sun-Tzu and his hated cousin Kai ultimately kill each other in single combat on (appropriately enough) the world of No Return."

So what, Sunny boy saved up all of his Canon lucky breaks and fiat to cash in on a single even more implausible moment of questionable glory? Or is this the Vandervahn Chistu brand of 'single combat'?

Cannonshop

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Re: Victor Victorious (Redux)
« Reply #24 on: 26 November 2020, 12:22:28 »
"Sun-Tzu and his hated cousin Kai ultimately kill each other in single combat on (appropriately enough) the world of No Return."

So what, Sunny boy saved up all of his Canon lucky breaks and fiat to cash in on a single even more implausible moment of questionable glory? Or is this the Vandervahn Chistu brand of 'single combat'?

The 'combat' wasn't combat.  They sat down and talked, 'enhanced', and with his brain hemorrhaging from the legal and ethical concepts Sunny was putting out, close to death, Kai struck out and with his last breath, killed his cousin before collapsing into brain-death.  The actual tapes of the conversation are deeply classified and only brought out when the Mask needs to induce an embolism in a political prisoner.
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Hominid Mk II

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Re: Victor Victorious (Redux)
« Reply #25 on: 26 November 2020, 13:36:38 »
"Sun-Tzu and his hated cousin Kai ultimately kill each other in single combat on (appropriately enough) the world of No Return."

So what, Sunny boy saved up all of his Canon lucky breaks and fiat to cash in on a single even more implausible moment of questionable glory? Or is this the Vandervahn Chistu brand of 'single combat'?

I generally tried my best to keep from giving any character or faction too much in the way of implausible runs of either good or bad luck. As best I can remember now, I think the thing that gave me the most cause for hesitation (about whether or not I was deviating from that principle too much) was contriving to have George Hasek's unauthorized invasion of the CC end up leaving an expanded SIC in possession of two incomplete WarShips and a shipyard that would let them build more. I'm not going to apologize for killing off Victoria Parrdeau - the canon timeline gave the WoB far too many lucky breaks to be credible and I felt that giving them one really unlucky break was simply redressing the balance a little.

As for Sun-Tzu challenging Kai to single combat at the climax of the Fratricide War here... his motivation was pretty similar to his motivation at the climax of the Capellan Crusades in the canon timeline: he was already dying and he wanted to be seen to go out with a bang instead of with a whimper. And it's by no means impossible that he could have had a Death Commando with a man-portable TAG designator hiding nearby to paint Yen Lo Wang for an Arrow IV-equipped Catapult in order to make sure Kai wouldn't leave No Return alive either. Or that he actually faked his own death and is now just barely alive in cryo-stasis deep beneath the Forbidden City on Sian just as in the canon timeline... . :wheelchair:
Ever felt that The Powers That Were at FASA, WizKids and FanPro never gave Victor Steiner-Davion and the Federated Commonwealth a fair shake in the canon timeline? Then you might be interested in my Victor Victorious AU at

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