Register Register

Author Topic: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)  (Read 64784 times)

Headshot

  • Master Sergeant
  • *
  • Posts: 318
  • Trust me. I know what i'm doing.
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #60 on: 09 January 2013, 13:17:42 »
Not a lot of love for Natasha huh? Was worried there'd be an outcry of some sort.

Prolly cause we're talking Natasha Kerensky here.
She isn't dead until we've seen the corpse, poked it with a glowing iron, burned it to ashes, and spread those ashes though half a dozen solar systems...  :D

That said, is she dead? That part could easily be read as unconscious and rescued by her company. As a Whammy should be able to survive a salvo from those four Mechs.

mikecj

  • Captain
  • *
  • Posts: 1749
  • Veteran of Galahad 3028
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #61 on: 09 January 2013, 14:34:38 »
This should be interesting
There are no fish in my pond.
"First, one brief announcement. I just want to mention, for those who have asked, that absolutely nothing what so ever happened today in sector 83x9x12. I repeat, nothing happened. Please remain calm." Susan Ivanova
"Solve a man's problems with violence, help him for a day. Teach a man to solve his problems with violence, help him for a lifetime." - Belkar Bitterleaf
Romo Lampkin could have gotten Stefan Amaris off with a warning.

Alexander Knight

  • Peditum Generalis
  • Battletech Volunteer
  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 4549
  • O-R-E-O
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #62 on: 09 January 2013, 16:14:38 »
Even assuming she's dead...

It's better than "Jump jet to the face!!!"

gladius

  • Master Sergeant
  • *
  • Posts: 263
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #63 on: 09 January 2013, 19:08:14 »
Even assuming she's dead...

It's better than "Jump jet to the face!!!"
True!

Arvanna

  • Warrant Officer
  • *
  • Posts: 481
  • Bayonets foreward Boys...CHARGE!!!!!!
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #64 on: 09 January 2013, 23:50:52 »
Definitely better then getting killed by a made up, never before used move. Honestly I could see them going thru their list of old characters to be killed because...no real reason, just can't let them die of old age, they get to Natasha and someone screams "WAIT?? I have a brilliant idea for how to knock her off."

Marwynn

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3982
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #65 on: 10 January 2013, 00:08:38 »
I did kinda leave that hanging didn't I? Hmm...   O:-) But I promise, no jump-jet flambe deaths.

Oh and the Hounds and Wolves will tangle. But not just yet, in 3028 they're still rebuilding from battalion-size. They'd have 2 tops.

The old unit books were remarkably detailed.

Chaeronea

  • Master Sergeant
  • *
  • Posts: 260
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #66 on: 10 January 2013, 05:17:22 »
I've got to admit that my first thought was that Natasha had been knocked out from being tossed around in the cockpit or flashback from the neurohelmet, rather than being killed. Well, whatever, I'm not the one writing the story. Although I did find the hint of shippiness between Jaime and Natasha rather interesting...

And the Widow being attacked by Mechs with Kurita paintjobs, even though the Dragoons are still on relatively good terns withe the Dragon.. gee, who do we know who has a habit of pulling false-flag ops on mercenary units they think has something they want? <raises eyebrow>   

Marwynn

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3982
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #67 on: 10 January 2013, 16:40:50 »
Bannockburn Bogs, Skye
Federation of Skye, Lyran Commonwealth
7 June 3028


The blue-and-gold Archer charged with its missile hatches open, streaming smoke behind it as Jaime Wolf raised the 'Mech's fists and loosed blue coherent light. Another blue-and-gold Archer staggered as the beams drilled into its already blackened right torso. The 1st Royal Guards retained their parade camo that shared the same colours as his personal 'Mech, and it infuriated him. The fact that they hadn't swapped to proper camo told Jaime that this was a point of pride for the regiment, facing off against his Dragoons. Sure were there to intimidate the locals, fly the flag, or other such rubbish, but once combat began it was a matter of moments to repaint a 'Mech, especially in the downtime.

A part of his mind filed it away for further use, the rest of him conned his 'Mech. The ARC-2W steadied its gait, angling slightly to give the SRM flight he loosed an optimal angle. The four warheads all slammed into the ruined Lyran's right torso, detonating the missiles stored there. In a flash, all that remained of the Steiner Archer standing was its left leg, planted down as the pilot tried to swivel.

Wolf paid it no mind. He was already pushing forward, for the next kill.

His command lance trailed after him, blasting apart opportunists trying to flank his 'Mech. Jaime knew he shouldn't have done this, charging in like a fool, jeopardizing their whole mission, all for revenge. It had been two weeks since the news, and he believed he could act steadily. So he planned, studied, and waited.

The 1st Royal Guards were good. Not great, Jaime measured, but disciplined and organized. He knew of the Lyran propensity for promoting based on social standing instead of actual capability, with many nobles purchasing ranks to have a fancy military uniform to wear at even fancier parties. The 1st Royals may be full of social climbing 'warriors, but they were 'warriors.

They fell back against his sudden rush, pulling back the heavier elements first and harassing with the Lights. It was an effective delaying tactic, re-consolidating and re-adjusting in lances or in pairs to overlap fire on exposed foes. It wouldn't work.

The armoured vehicles darting at his feet sported red-on-black, and stymied the lighter Lyran 'Mechs. If they slowed, the heavier 'Mechs behind Jaime re-taught the lesson all Light 'Mech pilots are taught: Speed is Life. A Jenner, possibly salvaged from a DCMS assault years ago, ended its service to the LCAF by exploding into fragments. A red-and-black Warhammer had burrowed its two particle cannon into its rear torso--the sudden engine breach forced the fusion core into contact with cold air and expanded violently.

"Hovercraft, move ahead and worry those heavies at the backfield till we get there. Don't let them get comfortable." Jaime sent the order, the first one he'd made in ten minutes.

The lighter 'Mechs melted away from him, chasing away the hovercraft so that the heavier 'Mechs could concentrate on them. Three more died as the rest of Alpha's 1st Company opened fire, having waited until the Lights sped away at direct lines away from them. By the time the Lights arrived, the hovercraft were speeding off and turning around for a renewed charge through the heavies.

Jaime approved of the Ryuken commander's aggression. He intended to use the borrowed company as a reserve force, but they had instead acted as screeners. They had trained the Ryuken well.

Maybe too well...

Jaime didn't focus on the thought, instead setting his crosshairs to a waiting Zeus. His Archer loosed a single flight of long range missiles, startling the Lyran who was being raked by the Kuritan hovercraft. The missiles fell in quick succession, ruining the autocannon that provided much of its sustained medium range capabilities.

The 80-ton Assault 'Mech turned to Wolf, loosing its own missiles from its right arm. Jaime side-stepped the laser lock and dove under the missiles but walked right into the azure beam from the Zeus's left arm. Half a ton of ablative ceramics and diamond-woven metals evaporated across his Archer's chest. The hit didn't penetrate, but it heated up the 'Mech.

His company was closing in, firing at middling ranges but seeking their targets. The Lyrans' Lights, tangled in their chase of the swifter hovercraft, formed into a lance as the grey vehicles left them behind. A scout lance from another company engaged them, forcing the Lyrans to dogfight. The Heavies, unsupported, still managed to form a staggered line even as the Ryuken craft zipped between them at full speed, raking them with autocannon fire. A fresh Atlas stumbled under the thunder of heavy autocannon. The Ryuken company used Scarborough Manufacturers' designs, and three of the hovercraft were Saladins, one for each lance.

The Saladin crews were coordinating fire, targeting the same 'Mech instead of spreading the damage around. By the Atlas's thermal bloom and staggering, Jaime judged it a wise choice.

He circled the Zeus to his left, angling closer, and loosed one then two flights of missiles. More than one clumped into its cockpit and the 80-tonner was suddenly unsteady on its feet. It shed flaming shards as it crashed down. Jaime felt the impact but moved on to another target. His command lance stayed close, blasting apart anything Jaime didn't engage.

Jaime Wolf was on the hunt.
« Last Edit: 10 January 2013, 16:54:08 by Marwynn »

Marwynn

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3982
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #68 on: 10 January 2013, 17:54:24 »

Express Lane 67, Bannockburn Highway, Skye
Federation of Skye, Lyran Commonwealth
7 June 3028



Dechan Fraser tracked on foot.

Colonel Wolf ordered him to take his recon company and scour the ambush site. The place where the Black Widow Company died. He had been standing around for an hour; the 1st Royal Guards didn't leave much behind to study. He identified armour shards, coolant leaks, and even spatters of blood. But he couldn't find anything useful.

He knew the Black Widows went down with a fight. The highway seemed like it intersected hell at the ambush point, and he could imagine the heat that blasted apart the trees and scoured the grounds for hundreds of metres around. There wasn't much to recover. It had been more than two weeks, and finally the Lyran's defense had only just wavered.

He had petitioned to be sent here right away, once they lost contact. The Dragoons' intel weenies suspected ECM to cover up the 1st Royal Guards managing to link with the 24th Lyrans that were facing off the Ryuken-san.

A Ryuken scouting force then reported heavy 'Mech traffic from both Lyran regiments, forcing Alpha and the Ryuken-san to fall back north, away from the city. The same scouts reported seeing the dead Black Widows. They were caught in a counter-offensive, it seemed.

Dechan's shoulders stooped as he remembered hearing that message, but he listened to his company's regular update hoping for something. Nothing new, nothing interesting.

Even the lance he sent to literally kick down the abandoned base for clues found only pristine hangars. When the 1st Royal Guards' base had been abandoned following the ambush, the tunnel the Black Widows thought to use in their sneak attack had been collapsed.

He walked on the highway, stepping over gashes that tore at the ferrocrete.

He couldn't understand what weapons made those marks. Dechan bent down and examined a ring embedded in the ferrocrete and flashed his light on it. Etched numbers glowed, serial keys, under the light. The sun was setting on the horizon and his time was nearly up.

Dechan unlatched his noteputer and scanned. The part belonged to a Crusader's left knee housing. Dragoon records were immaculately kept, so he tied in a search request through his nearby waiting Shadow Hawk and back to base. It would take a while to mate a handheld with a BattleMech with an administrative terminal, so he looked around even as the sun was setting.

The noteputer beeped minutes later, and Dechan started, having almost forgotten the query. He had been following the gouges that now seemed to be the result of a 'Mech being dragged across it. He stood at where the gouging ended, a spider-webbed crater.

Dechan glanced at the screen and fumed. Serial number unknown. No record for Kal-Ind #681NF-XXX in system. That's bloody useless... wait Kallon Industries? Dechan ran further queries as he clambered up to his SHD-2H, banging his elbows in his rush to secure himself. The Kuritans don't have a lot of the heavies the rest of the Sphere likes to throw around, but they do have enough of them for Luthien Armour Works to set up parts factories.

He patted the console, remembering how useless he felt until the replacement electronics shipped from another LAW compound. In the five years we've been working for the Combine, I'm not sure a disc from a leg actuator would have lasted more than a month in active use. Definitely not a 'Mech from the Black Widows... So who around here is sporting original replacement parts?

"Captain!" His comms shouted at him. "Captain Fraser, are you there?"

Dechan flicked a toggle. "I'm here, who's this?"

"This is Chu-i Robert Williams, you trained me in--"

"--in recon," Dechan remembered. "What's wrong, why are you on my freq--"

"--Why are you attack us, Captain Fraser?"

Dechan's throat dried. "We're not attacking you. Repeat, Wolf's Dragoons is friendly--"

"--tell that to your Heavy company! They're saying they blame us for Natasha Kerensky's death! That we didn't support--" Static washed out the rest. Dechan knew from experience that the squealing and static wash was from heavy energy weaponry.

"Williams." Dechan's hands manipulated the comm panel. "Chu-i Williams! Respond!"

"Captain!" Lt. Hersch called on another line. "We've got company... looks like Ryuken 'Mechs... they're firing!" Missiles arced down on Hersch's Griffin, half blasting apart tree branches or gouging the ground. But the 55-ton 'Mech was covered in flames.

Dechan Fraser frantically secured himself on the command couch. He flicked the command channel as soon as he set the neurohelmet on. "Company! Fall back! Do no engage, run and evade back to base!"

The Shadow Hawk rumbled to life as streams of autocannon fire from a grey Rifleman stitched fire up is right arm to his shoulder. Dechan used the momentum to pitch back at full speed, his 55-ton 'Mech's feet crunching down on the paltry evidence left.

He didn't waste breath trying to communicate with the Ryuken, though a part of his mind was wondering about the 'Mech that continued to stream shells at him.

Another burst connected, rocking him against his restraints and yellowing his rear armour over the autocannon's feeding systems. He focused on evading and coordinating the retreat.


« Last Edit: 11 January 2013, 11:08:51 by Marwynn »

Shadow_Wraith

  • Warrant Officer
  • *
  • Posts: 754
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #69 on: 10 January 2013, 21:43:26 »
Wow!  It will be interesting to see if they figure out who really is behind the attacking mechs!  >:D

snakespinner

  • Captain
  • *
  • Posts: 2412
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #70 on: 10 January 2013, 21:49:28 »
Treachery. It really destroys allied cohesion.
Wonder how many enemies the Dragoons have who would want to do this. >:D O0
I wish I could get a good grip on reality, then I would choke it.
Growing old is inevitable,
Growing up is optional.
Watching TrueToaster create evil genius, priceless...everything else is just sub-par.

VhenRa

  • Captain
  • *
  • Posts: 1855
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #71 on: 11 January 2013, 04:52:19 »
What should be a headache is... some units of the LCAF by 3028 were already reforming into FedSuns Style RCTs IIRC.

Headshot

  • Master Sergeant
  • *
  • Posts: 318
  • Trust me. I know what i'm doing.
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #72 on: 11 January 2013, 12:02:48 »
That fight against the Royals up there sure looks like they have a Lightning Company.

Marwynn

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3982
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #73 on: 11 January 2013, 13:40:35 »
Fedkirk Fire Chains, Fedkirk Continent, Lyons
Federation of Skye, Draconis Combine
8 June 3028


Theodore rushed the Revenant to the gap in the line, his command lance at his side, blasting the Kell Hounds' swift 'Mechs that dared to push through. Two fell while another two darted back and Theodore once again restrained his Legion from pushing forward.

Instead, he re-deployed them to expand the gap as he split the remnants of the light company into two halves sheltering behind outcrops and trees. The Hounds retreated, returning to their main force. Theodore saw the dug-in infantry and hull-down tanks against the setting sun that would have smashed the Legionnaires if they gave chase.

The 11th Legion of Vega once wouldn't have listened to him. They'd have rushed forward, get cut apart and out-maneuvered as they broke as much of the enemy's 'Mechs as they could. He spent the last few years teaching them a better way, and they were listening.

"Buso-senshi!" He called on the local command frequency. "Stay apart, let them dash forward between you then attack from behind. The 1132nd armour company is waiting to pick off any that get through. Do not advance. Chu-i Chalmers, company command is yours."

"Hai, Theodore-sama!"

Theodore saluted with the Revenant's right arm and stalked off. Tourneville's Vindicator stuck by him distressingly close by while the other two 'Mechs took the lead and the rear, enveloping him in a clever protective formation. Ever since he returned to the Legion after leaving so suddenly, Tourneville had redoubled his blatant spying efforts. The bodyguarding is new, Theodore observed as the command lance's armour and mechanized infantry caught up, stretching outwards in a screen. At least Tourneville's listening to my lessons, he noted, grudgingly approving the formation.

At one time, it would have infuriated him. But meeting with Minobu Tetsuhara had taught him many things, more than just being a samurai; he learned empathy and humility. Tourneville's doing his duty to the Coordinator. But he's showing loyalty to me by being so protective. Theodore sighed as the ON1-K's heatsinks lowered the 'Mech's waste heat to comfortable levels, cycling his air scrubbers as he did so. His loyalties wouldn't be split if I wasn't so... at odds with my father. I'm not just another warrior.

He took a moment to analyze the reports the Irian Orator-5K was compiling from numerous sources. The Kell Hounds had arrived with two 'Mech battalions to reinforce the 12th Star Guards who were down to a battalion-and-a-half of functional 'Mechs. That put them slightly above the 11th Legion of Vega's full regiment. Theodore called up the latest conventional casualties, noting that the 12th Star Guards' armour was vastly depleted, down to two battalions. The Kell Hounds only had armed transports for their infantry. The Legion came with full armour and infantry regiments, and they were at 70% effectiveness.

Theodore held the numerical advantage, but the mercenaries' 'Mechs were heavier overall. The Kell Hounds relied on an almost Kuritan approach, with an array of 'Mechs wheeling and dashing like Light Cavalry, screening their Heavies. In the DCMS's case, the Heavy 'Mechs were mostly Dragons. The Hounds brought heavier firepower to bear, and the 12th Star Guards were more than willing to coordinate with them.

The Eleventh was still a Legion of Vega. That meant they got whatever 'Mechs the 'warriors owned and the 'Mechs no one else in the DCMS wanted. When he first arrived, that meant broken-down Lights and a surprising amount of Mediums which traditional DCMS thinking still considered a poor compromise of speed and firepower.

He called up Sho-sa Tetsuhara, recently promoted due to the loss of Third Battalion's CO and XO in the opening firefight. "Sho-sa, any chance of breaking through?"

"Tai-sa," Fuhito responded out-of-breath but eerily calm as he seemed to be when conning a 'Mech. "These Hounds fight like devils! We've broken through three times now but they've redeployed quickly."

Theodore called up the map where he sent Third Battalion; it was a ridged area formed from the tectonic pressures of the inner continent. Plenty of open ground and lead right to the mercenaries' supply lines. It pulled the excess 'Mechs from the combined mercenaries and allowed him to bring up the Eleventh's armour and infantry to stall their assault.

"How's the opposition faring?"

"Two companies, tai-sa. But we've downed a company in total. Those choppers you brought in, deadly." A high-energy burst cut off the rest of Fuhito's report. "Unless they reinforce, we'll break through yet."

Tai-sa Kurita nodded. "Excellent. No reports of units breaking off from the front lately." Theodore cut off of the command line. Third Battalion was down nearly two lances themselves.

Fuhito still had numerical superiority. The landscape was not friendly to ground vehicles or infantry, and Theodore dispatched a battalion of combat VTOLs to aid Third Battalion. The mercenaries had to reinforce their admittedly better-equipped forces with frontline troops. That meant either advancing their infantry and remaining armour into his prepared guns, or sitting it out. They had chosen to advance.

If Fuhito succeeded in making off or destroying the supplies, the mercenaries would be further weakened. If he failed to do so, he still would have drawn off enemy 'Mechs from their assault or reserves. A lesser victory, but still one in the short term.

His trudging came to a stop at another gap, this time purposefully laid open. A nearly full Medium company trade energy blasts at range, both sides behind ample cover. The gaps, three that Theodore could see, invited the mercenaries to close in. Two were full of 12th Star Guards 'Mechs who should've known better than to trust a safe path against the Eleventh Armour. The third was being pressed by hovercraft and Kell Hounds Light 'Mechs, with tracked vehicles following behind.

Theodore rotated the Revenant's torso, tracking the lead Wolfhound and sent a stream of shells from his KaliYama autocannon. The WLF-1 pilot hadn't counted on heavier 'Mechs and faltered as Tourneville hurled a blast of particles at its legs. The combined attack set the Light 'Mech off balance and it crashed in a deep gouge to the ground.

A Legionnaire Dervish twisted and launched Infernos on the downed 'Mech then returned its attention to the still advancing force. The mercenary 'warrior saw no choice but to eject as the gel began immolating the Light 'Mech.

Theodore watched this with part of his attention but kept an eye on the advance. The Lights were not meant to push through but rather act as a distraction for the combat tanks rumbling behind them. Apart from the Wolfhound no other mercenary 'Mech was down, though many sported new molten wounds.

He opened a line to his command centre and fed his sensors in. "Is that all of them?"

"Hai, tai-sa!" An analyst replied.

"Begin bombardment," Theodore said, clicking off the line.

They knew the Kell Hounds and 12th Star Guards didn't have more than a regiment of vehicles between them, a third of which were infantry fighting vehicles. The two battalions were all accounted for. All dug-in.

The Long Tom shells arrived less than a minute later, landing like fists of angry angels battering the earth. The Legionnaires were calling in the strikes, using artillery drills that the DCMS rarely applied.

Theodore watched, satisfied, as the Kell Hounds began retreating. It was a blindspot for the elite mercenaries; they put infantry to great use but unlike the Dragoons didn't integrate vehicles. They were left under the 12th Star Guards' command, and he saw the weakness in that arrangement and chiseled at it.

His Orator-5K lit up with reports of retreating armour, pulling away as scattered shells fell amongst them. The mercenary 'Mechs were evaporating as well, and Theodore opened a line to Fuhito.

"Sho-sa? How goes it."

"Snuck a lance through and sent half the VTOLs to cover them." Fuhito said, voice energized but steely. "Used an old Dragoons trick."

"Good work, Sho-sa Tetsuhara." Theodore was impressed. "Order them to destroy what they can, you have twenty minutes until they reach you. If they continue their advance--"

Warnings and klaxons interrupted Theodore as fire fell from the sky. Blasts of lasers, shells, and missiles fell and rocked the Legionnaires. Theodore angled up and loosed a fight of missiles just to distract the aerospace fighters. They flew on, assured of their invincibility as the Legion 'Mechs were ripped apart.

Bombs fell, wracking the land further. One landed directly on Tourneville's Vindicator and the 'Mech blinked off the lance feed. More fell around Theodore, who blazed away with his lasers as he struggled to bring the KaliYama in line.

The klaxons blended into one urgent wail, and a threat indicator blinked that an O/P 2500 TGFD had acquired a lock.

Theodore turned the Revenant towards the incoming Stuka which flew in low. His reticule glowed gold and he stitched fire on its nose and wings with the booming Class 10 autocannon as his missiles spattered its canopy and tail. The lasers burnt deep rents on its right wing, melting the already shredded armour as the Stuka returned fire.

Four azure beams slammed into the Revenant as missiles corkscrewed towards him.

Theodore felt his 'Mech falling as the impact warning sounded. He slammed the eject and blacked out as the ground erupted.


« Last Edit: 11 January 2013, 14:01:45 by Marwynn »

mikecj

  • Captain
  • *
  • Posts: 1749
  • Veteran of Galahad 3028
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #74 on: 11 January 2013, 14:15:44 »
Wow, everyones having a bad day.

Did anyone lese visualize Fraser "There was a mighty battle..."
There are no fish in my pond.
"First, one brief announcement. I just want to mention, for those who have asked, that absolutely nothing what so ever happened today in sector 83x9x12. I repeat, nothing happened. Please remain calm." Susan Ivanova
"Solve a man's problems with violence, help him for a day. Teach a man to solve his problems with violence, help him for a lifetime." - Belkar Bitterleaf
Romo Lampkin could have gotten Stefan Amaris off with a warning.

snakespinner

  • Captain
  • *
  • Posts: 2412
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #75 on: 11 January 2013, 19:29:07 »
No plan survives contact.
Well Theodore learned that or at least the headache will teach him some more humility. }:) ;D
I wish I could get a good grip on reality, then I would choke it.
Growing old is inevitable,
Growing up is optional.
Watching TrueToaster create evil genius, priceless...everything else is just sub-par.

Marwynn

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3982
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #76 on: 11 January 2013, 19:54:58 »
Legion Fallback Point, Fedkirk Continent, Lyons
Federation of Skye, Draconis Combine
8 June 3028


Sho-sa Esau Olivares roared in his cockpit just as his Victor's Pontiac 100 autocannon thundered into the nearest mercenary. He no longer cared what it was in front of him, but he held on to his rage. He was still in command, of himself and of the unit.

It's what Sama woulda wanted. Theodore had made him second-in-command of the unit itself, and Olivares' heart still thudded with pride at that. That made him the boss now.

The enemy 'Mech fell apart and he moved in, stepping on its head.

He blamed himself. Theodore put him in charge of the battle line; 11th's First Battalion with two battalions of tanks and PBIs each. But the aerospace fighters were too much and he ordered the retreat when Theodore's signal cut off. If it weren't for the tai-sa's prudence in acquiring some devoting some of the vehicles to anti-air, they would simply have been wiped out.

Sama trusted me. Damned bloody mercs!

His Victor speared a tank with twin ruby streams, ruining its tracks as four missiles wrecked it in a single blast. Burning infantrymen tumbled out of the wreck, but Olivares paid it no head. He had retreated to the tai-sa's preset fallback point. Hours before, Olivares joked that Sama was being too cautious.

Now he thanked him for his foresight. Olivares studied everything Theodore, Sama, said. He knew he wasn't the smartest, but he also knew what worked, and Sama's stuff always worked.

When he has the right intel! Olivares punched a random surface on his cockpit. The stations across the world were under their control, he was overseeing them for Sama. They reported nothing until the Kell Hounds' DropShips came shooting across the horizon. Someone's lying, and they gonna pay, Esau promised as he rejoined his lance.

He handed off artillery control to company commanders. Sama had brought in a support regiment from Dieron, the battalion of VTOLs, a battalion of recovery and support vehicles, and the artillery battalion. Esau Olivares figured since he loved using artillery so much it was only good to share, like Sama would.

The 12th Star Guards had little to no vehicles left, and the Kell Hounds were saving up their infantry. So the artillery went into keeping the heaviest 'Mechs at bay as he drew back his forces to cover them against fighters.

Olivares could do the math. There were two fighter carriers up there, Vengeances his warbook suggested, that stayed in orbit. That meant that not only were the stations not working right, or honestly, but so was aerospace traffic control.

The 12th Star Guards were pulling back to mass another charge. Olivares nodded proudly as a company commander called in a fire mission. The artillery blasted the assembling 'Mechs, felling two before they scattered back even further.

He listened to everything Sama said about tactics, but nothing covered aerospace defense. So he asked for help, stunning the other officers. They drew up this arrangement, and they started calling him Esau-sama to which her yelled back, "There's only one Sama here and he's not here!"

Esau drew the line and waited for the dawn.


=============================
Fedkirk Fire Chains, Fedkirk Continent, Lyons
Federation of Skye, Draconis Combine
8 June 3028


Fuhito speared a Kell Hounds Ostroc with Katana Kat's PPC, shredding armour in a thundering blast. The Heavy 'Mech backed off, its weapons still out of range and not willing to take the hits. With it gone, he linked up with the lance he dispatched to smash the supply depots.

The VTOLs he had sent as cover for the lance zipped above them, unrelenting in their peppering of the Ostroc with missiles and shells. It returned to its comrades, bleeding flames and smoke form its torn body.

He ordered the VTOLs to dart away, using the enemy's focus on them to reshift his lines. The Kell Hounds knew how to fight. Once the Legion retreated they backed off and worked to cut off Fuhito from the rest of his regiment. It would have worked had it not been for Tai-sa Kurita's gifts: he returned to the Legion with a battalion of combat VTOLs, artillery, and support vehicles, all trained on Dieron.

Coordinating with them had been smooth, but the conventional regiment knew how to operate with each other. He had set loose Tai-i Jane Sherman, the VTOL commander, to delay the Hounds. She surprised him by coordinating artillery strikes on the 'Mechs she slowed down with their raking attacks.

It didn't last long, Sho-sa Olivares needed the artillery to cover his own retreat and to buy time to re-form their defense. Tai-sa Kurita's battle plan would work, even the possibility of a retreat was his idea.

Still, Fuhito mused, What I'd give for more artillery.

So Fuhito maneuvered his battalion, wheeling and dashing as the Kell Hounds had in the morning, seeking an opening, all the while moving south and west. The further away the Kell Hounds chased them, the farther they'd be from the main battle line.

The mercenaries' heavier 'Mechs were working against them. Their Lights had been damaged in their high-speed maneuvers earlier in the battle, and they were not giving up their chance to crush a third of the 11th Legion's 'Mechs. Still the distance grew and Fuhito ordered a continued march instead of their planned rest.

"Sho-sa?" The feminine voice inquired on a private link.

"We keep moving, Sherman-san. Please dispatch scouts further ahead, we are leaving the Kell Hounds behind."

"Hai!" The link died and a company of the VTOLs split outwards. They soon outdistanced his own scouts and his comms board indicated the VTOLs were speaking with their 'Mech counterparts, coordinating and communicating.

The tai-sa would approve, Fuhito nodded. He imagined he would've raged and wailed at the loss of Theodore Kurita. Instead he felt the burden of command and a coldness. He heard the Wolf's Dragoons had taken to calling his brother Minobu 'Iron Man'. Not because he lacked passion, but of his unbending resolve.

Fuhito knew he lacked that. The Tetsuhara hara. Now, he had an inkling of what it felt like and his memories finally began catching up to his experience. The strength flowed calmly from within, and it was enough to do what he needed to.

The Kell Hounds had not given up their pursuit, breaking off faster elements to pull out ahead in another angle. They'd try to harry the force towards the hilly terrain near the coast, slow them down while the Lights pinned them in place. Tai-sa Kurita warned him of that, and made Fuhito identify passes that the battalion could swiftly move through.

Theodore-sama also pointed out that the Kell Hounds aerospace forces might still make an appearance. Fuhito shivered inwardly at the memory.

He rotated the air-watch duties from third company to his former command, second company. Tai-sa Kurita thought that while all samurai must remain vigilant it was prudent to rotate those duties. The mind is a blade, and the blade can dull with improper use. His father had said that to Theodore, and the tai-sa repeated that to him. He had heard the words, but now he understood.

The horizon lit up with the rising sun, and Fuhito smiled. The night passes--

A beep interrupted his thoughts, the comm panel requested his attention on a civilian frequency. The planet was being inundated with the video transmission, he moved it to his main HUD, watching in a window.

"To the DCMS on Lyons, know this! Last night we killed your Heir, Theodore Kurita! Surrender or flee!"

The image was of a ruin of a man, a Kuritan MechWarrior judging by the tattered coolant vest and boots. It zoomed in on the gore, to a flexi-printout of Tai-sa Theodore Kurita in the same outfit holding Tomoe by the waist. Both were smiling,spattered by blood.

"We would have preferred to take him alive, but he resisted. We'll kill all of you Snakes if you don't leave." The image dissolved to the 12th Star Guards' logo then blanked.

Fuhito smiled, despite himself. Resisted? Right to the end, he would have fought. He did. He slowed Katana Kat and passed orders. He didn't wait for confirmation, he ordered with full knowledge of his unit's obedience. The lances peeled away from their approach and re-assembled facing the direction they came from in three arrowheads.

The VTOLs swung about then and fell behind hills and trees, masking their approach. Tai-i Sherman had created two pincers from her battalion, knowing what he need from her without being told.

The Kell Hounds, now a reinforced battalion, tracked the VTOLs. Thinking it another delaying strike, they slowed and deployed to chase them off.

They saw Third Battalion's charge too late.

"For the Dragon!"



afterthought53

  • Recruit
  • *
  • Posts: 16
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #77 on: 11 January 2013, 23:15:55 »
Natasha and Theodore dead, the Dragon and Wolf are suffering horrendously for this. I have to wonder what big names have bit the dust on the Lyran side? Perhaps one of the Kell brothers. Then again nothing can make up for the death of Theodore, Takashi's only son and heir.

Marwynn

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3982
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #78 on: 11 January 2013, 23:47:30 »
*cough*

I can't kill Theodore. Yet.  ;)

================================

Fedkirk Fire Chains, Fedkirk Continent, Lyons
Federation of Skye, Draconis Combine
8 June 3028


Theodore woke with hands grabbing at his restraints as he tried to open his eyes. His head was ringing and he couldn't hear the coughing that wracked his body and caused sharp prods of pain all over.

His eyes finally snapped open as he felt a prick on his neck. The coldness that spread warmed set everything in focus. He looked at a burning sky and realized he was hanging upside down as a 'Mech's arm ripped free and fell.

Ben Tourneville was busy cutting his mangled restraints. Blood covered his face, but he had staunched the flow. Theodore reached out, rubbing Tourneville's head and mussing his hair.

The spy looked up at him, confused. "Theodore-sama! You're awake!"

Theodore nodded, his head rocking back and forth slowly. He wore a MechWarrior Cooling Suit, a new gift from his cousin Constance, and it featured a limited ability to inject its wearer with stims and life-saving drugs. Whatever it gave me isn't aiding my judgement. Theodore reflected and he patted Tourneville on the cheek.

He fell, upside down, into Tourneville's arms. The other man was grievously injured, his right shoulder scorched, and yet he didn't complain. Theodore noted that.

"They are coming, tai-sa!" Tourneville said in fierce whisper. "We must go." Theodore wobbled to his feet, leaving Tourneville to ransack his command chair's supplies. He returned with a Nakjima laser pistol and some battery clips, rations, water, and a flexi-printout of Theodore and Tomoe.

"Hold on to that, for me, will you Ben?" Theodore said, depositing the supplies into his suit.

Ben didn't argue with him, stuffing the picture into his cooling vest. Theodore saw it was blasted in several places, the toxic coolant mixing with his blood. Tourneville saw Theodore looking and shook his head, grabbing his elbow and ushered the young Kurita on. "The useless Legion has retreated, tai-sa. They didn't even check to see if you still lived. We are behind enemy lines."

As they moved, the stims in his system awakened more and more of his brain. "Comms?"

"None, tai-sa. We are fortunate that the eager sellswords rushed forward, they may not even know they brought you down."

Theodore stopped and looked back. Revenant laid on its back, as if basking on a beach. It's right torso was shredded, the autocannon a drooping ruin. He turned and saw the series of gouges the Stuka left on the ground as it landed on its wing, tearing it off, bounced and landed on its nose and broke apart as it whirled.

The STU-K5's cockpit was still burning.

They limped past and Theodore realized his left knee wasn't cooperating, dragging behind him. Tourneville moved to that side, taking on his weight without a word, pistols in each hand.

"Hide, Lord!" He urged, and Theodore stood confused.

Tourneville pushed him underneath the Stuka's shorn wing, into the pit it carved. It pinged as it cooled. There was room only for one. Still groggy, Theodore heard the rumbling of the tank when it moved past Revenant.

Ben Tourneville stood in the open and raised both laser pistols. Theodore forced himself to watch as Tourneville, the thorn at his side for years and years, screamed and charged. The light from the pistols seared his eyes, but the tank's spotlight burst in the first shot and the the communications antenna melted in three shots.

The tank, an armed transport Theodore saw as his eyes adjusted, disgorged its cargo of infantry but Ben was ready for them. He dropped the spent pistols and hurled two grenades. One exploded harmless on the tank's hull, the other right in the midst of a debarking squad. Theodore saw Tourneville duck as heavy machine gun fire from the transport chewed through the air above him. Lying prone, he snapped off shots at the platoon swarming out.

For seconds no bullet could touch him. A grenade fell at his location and he tossed it away, another fell and exploded before he could move. The troopers, 12th Star Guards judging by their uniforms, surrounded the upturned Ben. The pistols hummed twice more, cutting down two troopers.

The rest of the squad opened fire, riddling the corpse with bullets and laser scorches.

Theodore saw all this.

An officer, or the tank driver, came up with a fistful of printouts and a flashlight. Theodore ducked low and strained to hear.

"You malf-ups!" The man with the light screamed. "How are we going to identify him now? Back in the--"

"--Hey eltee!" A trooper shouted, picking something up from the ground near Tourneville.

"That's him, isn't it?"

The lieutenant snatched the picture and examined it under the light. It showed Theodore Kurita, wearing the standard DCMS cooling vest, sitting with Tomoe wearing the same. "Now she's a beaute!" The lieutenant said, passing the image around.

"Boys, we just nailed us Teddy the K! Theodore Kurita himself!" The platoon shouted, their dead forgotten in the moment. "Get a body bag! We're taking this back to HQ, the comms are busted."

Theodore waited as the platoon clambered back in, collecting the dead. The transport reversed and disappeared, leaving him cold and furious.

He waited, knowing that to move would risk capture. Sure enough, a team of techs drove up in a half-track and began examining the Kuritan wrecks.

Theodore banished the pain from his body, stopping it from affecting his mind but using it to fuel his senses. He fed in fear as well, he had no use for it. Against the flickering pyres he was the shadow. Even if the techs were alert they wouldn't have seen him. The first two died beside each other, not knowing he was right behind them.

The third and fourth he shot, not trusting to surprise with his damaged knee. The Nakjima's hum wasn't loud enough to be heard over the half-track's engine. He checked the techs for supplies, donned the jumpsuit of the one he shot in the head, and took the half-track.

The vehicle was still rumbling northwards when dawn came.



Marwynn

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3982
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #79 on: 14 January 2013, 12:32:28 »
Unity Palace, Imperial City, Luthien
Pesht Military District, Draconis Combine
14 June 3028



He found Takashi Kurita at his balcony overlooking the city.

Subhash Indrahar sighed and bent down, grasping the note that Takashi kept in his grip. Despite his efforts to control the flow of information, somehow the news found its way to the Coordinator. He had hoped to deliver it himself. Takashi's own doctors, performing a routine physical for the upcoming journey to Terra for Hanse Davion's wedding, had identified warning signs that could lead to a severe stroke. He was to undergo treatment in two days, Subhash returned from New Samarkand to oversee it personally.

He stared at Takashi's face, tortured and mourning. One of the most powerful men in all of humanity... died alone.

The Smiling One had withheld the news about Theodore's death before it could be confirmed, before he could alert the doctors. But he had been outmaneuvered. It had been presented when his attentions had been weakest, focused on unraveling the sudden turn of events on the Steiner border. Not just with Theodore, but on Skye, and in Tamar.

A figure darkened the doorway, dressed in the Otomo's traditional uniform. He wore a trim of gold that was the privilege of the Kurita family.

Subhash was no longer smiling as he closed his friend's eyes and stood.

For several eternities, the Director of the ISF contemplated the man that stood in front of him. Shadows within shadows, Subhash judged and ordered his mind.

Subhash started to speak, but the figure stiffened. Almost regally. His line of attack was turned aside, deflected with an efficiency of movement.

"Coordinator," he said, smiling with a placating bow.

He strode into the balcony, not even glancing at his predecessor's corpse. His eyes were fixed on the Imperial City, glowing like a jewel underneath the swirling dark clouds of Luthien.

Marcus Kurita looked up into the stars and laughed.



END OF BOOK ONE

« Last Edit: 14 January 2013, 13:54:00 by Marwynn »

Stormcrow

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 5069
  • Art by Shimmering Sword
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #80 on: 14 January 2013, 12:41:31 »
It looks like we may have a Drac Civil War brewing and right before Hanse's wedding, too
Commandant Otto Maurus, ARWH-1Z ArcHammer, Maurus' Minutemen
Captain Obadiah Sykes, OSR-5FCR Ostroc, Second Filtvelt Citizens Militia

I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand. - Confucius
Noli Timure Messorem
May God defend me from my friends; I can defend myself from my enemies. - Voltaire
Wielder of the Ferro-Carbide Bat of DOOMâ„¢

snakespinner

  • Captain
  • *
  • Posts: 2412
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #81 on: 14 January 2013, 18:27:37 »
Things could not get worse for Theodore.
Or could they? >:D }:)
I wish I could get a good grip on reality, then I would choke it.
Growing old is inevitable,
Growing up is optional.
Watching TrueToaster create evil genius, priceless...everything else is just sub-par.

mikecj

  • Captain
  • *
  • Posts: 1749
  • Veteran of Galahad 3028
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #82 on: 15 January 2013, 08:03:47 »
Marcus... no challenge for Galahad
There are no fish in my pond.
"First, one brief announcement. I just want to mention, for those who have asked, that absolutely nothing what so ever happened today in sector 83x9x12. I repeat, nothing happened. Please remain calm." Susan Ivanova
"Solve a man's problems with violence, help him for a day. Teach a man to solve his problems with violence, help him for a lifetime." - Belkar Bitterleaf
Romo Lampkin could have gotten Stefan Amaris off with a warning.

lowrolling

  • Warrant Officer
  • *
  • Posts: 759
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #83 on: 15 January 2013, 11:22:52 »
Right now I am willing to cover up to 3 to 1 on Theodore.
May no one ever know less then me......

Headshot

  • Master Sergeant
  • *
  • Posts: 318
  • Trust me. I know what i'm doing.
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #84 on: 15 January 2013, 13:27:36 »
Marcus... no challenge for Galahad

Might wanna rethink that.
Without the Dragoons, Takashi and the "Death-to-Mercs-order" the Suns/Combine front will look completely different.
The Dracs might even wage a real war, instead of the personal feud we got in canon.

Marwynn

  • Major
  • *
  • Posts: 3982
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #85 on: 15 January 2013, 15:14:57 »
Marcus is a nice character to play with... because we know very little of him apart from the fact that he's a schemer.

And apparently a pretty good one. Though the novels don't say it, I think he lacks military expertise. Takashi had that. Theodore does, but he's overbold.

We have capable people on the borders. But what can they do against a Kurita v Kurita fight?

And now, for a very long Prologue for Book Two!

===================================

BOOK TWO
PROLOGUE

Lugh Overlord-class DropShip, Fedkirk Fire Chains, Lyons
Dieron Military District, Draconis Combine
17 June 3028



Morgan Kell sat beside her as the instruments slowly stilled one at a time. His eyes burned, his body ached, and the gnawing pit in his chest thudded painfully.

A week, only a week... Morgan squeezed her hand gently. The doctors said it could be months before she woke up, if her organs didn't fail... Another telltale beeped then silenced itself.

He closed his eyes and thought back. They had pushed the Legion back at severe cost. She was supposed to chase the harassers away and rejoin the main force. Instead, the Snake battalion turned around and charged them. He didn't know who to blame, the 12th Star Guards for their crude broadcast, or the Legionnaires for their bloodlust.

It had been a week since he rushed to her broken Wolverine and gently tore open the cockpit, mangled by a PPC blast. He stayed by her when he could spare the time, wanting to be there when her eyes opened again.

But she wouldn't wake. There was no life left in her hands, so he held on tighter. Some time in the last few days, as the casualties mounted, he imagined that his hands were her lifeline. Her way back.

Her pulse is so weak.

He gripped her furiously then, fighting the urge to shake her awake, to yell at her to come back. Morgan opened his mouth, but a shrill note sounded instead of his voice. All the lights stilled into lines and urgent alarms.

Salome Ward was dead.

The gnawing in his chest engulfed him. They found him on the floor, in the corner of her room, days, hours, minutes later, he couldn't tell. He rifled through the many memories he had with her--There weren't enough. There should have been a lifetime's worth.

Cat Wilson shook him.

Is he yelling? Morgan wondered, hearing the sounds but not the words.

One word made it through. Morgan knew it meant something, something important.

Genyosha.

It didn't matter anymore.

Cat Wilson, tears in his eyes, slapped him. It did nothing. Cat heaved him to a chair, securing him as familiar klaxons wailed in the background.

Moments passed. He imagined he was roaring at the loss. He felt heavy. Heavier. He couldn't breathe!

Good, Morgan thought, gasping for air. I'll be with her soon...


===================================


11th Legion of Vega Field Headquarters, Fedkirk Fire Chains, Lyons
Dieron Military District, Draconis Combine
17 June 3028



Yorinaga Kurita waited quietly as the reports from the Genyosha's aerospace fighters came in. He was pleased at the full aero-regiment they fielded. When the fighter wing arrived a month ago, he had sent one reply back to the DCA: When will the rest arrive?

The Kurokaze, the Black Wind, had a full wing of thirty six fighters, the best the Draconis Combine Admiralty had. It quickly grew to two Wings thanks to his visit with Warlord Dieron. And the Black Wind grew to a full aero-regiment, a rarity in the Draconis Combine, when another Wing was freed from somewhere in the Benjamin District.

He did not require the best fighter pilots. Only the most willing, and the Kurokaze had very eager pilots. They battered the mercenary fighters in orbit, chasing away the too-confident Vengeance fighter carriers in the first minutes of engagement.

Yorinaga let them go, ordering the fighters to punch through the atmosphere to avenge his nephew. The Lyons' HPG had broadcasted the mercenary's footage for nearly a week now. The news may have already made its way to Dieron. He would have to do something about that disrespect.

The systems blurred with an update: The Kell Hounds were leaving. Yorinaga let them go too, focusing on his duty. The other mercenaries, the 12th Star Guards, were still defiant. He ordered a battalion to drop in their headquarters.

He passed silent orders and disconnected from the command feed as the hangar doors opened. Yorinaga ran one final check of the jump pack attached to his Warhammer and then stepped clear of the DropShip.

Below him, the tatters of the 11th Legion of Vega ringed their stronghold. They hurled shells, missiles, and light at any and all-comers.

Smoke rose from the compound, pyres of fallen 'warriors in their 'Mechs and fighters. As he triggered the jump pack, his systems finally plugged him into the local command net. Surprisingly, it was still operational and in good order. No panicked cries, no shouts of celebration.

A battalion of the 12th Star Guards were pulling away. He had chosen to drop in their path, and soon an avalanche of 'Mechs joined him. Without requiring orders, the Genyosha 'warriors arrayed themselves into the formation Yorinaga wanted, leading with the heavy Rasalhague company.

The battle was over in minutes.

A telltale glowed on his comm panel.

"Welcome to Lyons, uncle," said Theodore Kurita.



===================================


New Ivaarsen
Draconis March, Federated Suns
17 June 3028



Hanse Davion stood on the shoulder of his BattleMaster, aware that eyes and cameras were on him.

He didn't participate in the fighting, at least not as a combatant. But he did command from the helm of his BattleMaster, the comm suites were upgraded just for that purpose; an expense that could've paid for a whole lance of 'Mechs.

It's good to be the Prince.

Below, citizens cheered at him. They gushed out of the villages and the cities that the Dragon had left untouched. In fact, the Dragon had only destroyed planetary defenses and New Ivaarsen's war-making industries. Hanse found it curious at first until he familiarized himself with Kester Hsiun Chi, the Warlord of the Galedon Military District that now swelled to nearly engulf Robinson itself.

He had a wedding to plan. An invasion to finalize. But the Dragon roared and he had no choice but to respond with garrison forces at the heart of the Federated Suns, stripping his borders and straining his JumpShips even further.

Communications with the Lyran Commonwealth was becoming trickier. JumpShips had been disappearing in the Skye Region, supposedly seized by pirates but pressed into Combine service. The same was happening all along the Draconis March, wreaking havoc at an already weakened economy and a frightened and angry populace.

An economy he weakened to prosecute the war against the Capellan Confederation. A people he abandoned to conquer the weak Capellan Confederation.

He waved one last time then made his way back to the BattleMaster's cockpit. The DCMS on the planet were just conventional units, and he had a hunch that most of the units had unfortunate loyalties to Grieg Samsonov, Galedon's previous--and less dangerous--Warlord. The Ryuken and other Regulars had lifted off, leaving the troops to their own.

Hanse admired the ruthlessness the Kuritans displayed even if he detested the means. The soldiers would be worth more dead than alive to Takashi--Hanse sensed his hand in this, if nothing more than just as a delaying tactic. Once the AFFS arrived the DCMS troops scattered, if there were any left.

From local reports, the DCMS had been standing down their presence ever since they came in to smash the 'Mech garrison. They assumed the Kuritans were slowly lifting off their force, since DropShips still arrived periodically. They had made no demands, no moves to secure more territory.

The only recent intel they had involved the seizing of construction equipment. Lots of drilling and excavating tools. But that had been a month ago, and the last DCMS DropShips arrived a week after that.

Hanse stared at the map of possible Kuritan locations. A flyover found new roads, some abandoned bases, and no sign of any Kuritans.

The overwhelming force he brought to bear on New Ivaarsen was unspent. He allowed Ardan Sortek to see the sites himself, but Hanse was planning to leave tomorrow at the latest.

He raised the BattleMaster's right hand in a wave then closed it in a Steiner fist.

Where the hell is the Dragon?


===================================


Imperial Institute of Technology, Pauchang, Xinyang
Benjamin Military District, Draconis Combine
17 June 3028



Chief Researcher Kowalski kicked the treads and immediately regretted it. The light tank sat undisturbed as he hopped around on one foot.

He took a far more critical look at the Tanegashima in front of him. It was an unremarkable, 35-ton vehicle, built on a frame Bulldog Enterprises had dug out of their storage spaces. It was squat, compact, and was one of the few new tank designs in the Inner Sphere that would use fusion engines.

His scientists had all proposed using hydrogen fuel-cells, but Kowalski knew the DCMS's Procurement Department would never bite. It was an additional complication to the already entangled logistics lines they had established--a fusion engine, while costly, had the advantage of being built using standard components.

Spares and tools would be plentiful, and they had to be. Theodore-sama's plan called for more warmachines. More capable warmachines.

Still, he succumbed to a compromise. The Tanegashima would be designed with a modular engine bay, increasing the cost slightly. The same frame would be able to use a fuel-cell or fusion engine, even an electric battery-powered one. In the end, it was an economist that convinced him the wisdom of this, that the DCMS's budget was separate from an individual planet's militia. The militia's salaries and equipment were paid for by their homeworld even when the DCMS sees fit to take a few regiments along.

The economists said that wealthier planets could afford the fusion engines, while the others could make do with fuel-cells without too much effort. Some would even rush at the chance to use fusion engines, even if it'd be more practical to use fuel-cells. And with that demand, technical expertise would rise on many worlds in the Combine. Meaning more factories, more jobs, and more tech. It would lay the groundwork for the rest of the new combat vehicles.

Kowalski harrumphed at the thought. The only reason he needed was that it was a good warmachine for Theodore-sama.

He glanced at the turret, recently redesigned to accept the Lord's Light PPC instead of the Part-Kill Heavy Cannon the engineers originally installed. It had a longer barrel, and it cost more, but the Lord's Light was one of the most common weapons in the Draconis Combine and was supplied at a discount.

Alshain Weapons were positively drooling to get a chance to look at the Extended Range PPC's specs. Not that they'll be able to make one anytime soon.

Still, the tank was fast, carried a respectable weapon, and could be churned out by next year.

Chief Researcher Kowalski nodded to the engineers as he limped his way back to his office, continuing to ignore the buzzing of the scientists that had been harassing him all that time.


===================================


Downtown, New Bonhom, Carse
Tamar Pact, Lyran Commonwealth
17 June 3028


Ninyu Kerai stopped and examined the hawker's wares before turning away, shaking his head.

He followed the aroma of cooking and lined up to buy. The vendor seemed to be doing brisk business even in the off-hours, and Ninyu had plenty of time to choose from the menu and fish out the correct change in hard currency.

The Cold Cycle on Carse was just turning down, and people were enjoying the sunlight from the system's two stars as they took a mid-afternoon snack break. Despite living this close to the Combine, despite being targeted in raids and invasions, the people were happy. Almost unafraid.

The people ate, lightly bundled in cold-weather clothing. They were living freely.

He took a seat beside some similarly dressed fellows and bit down on the polish sausage he ordered. He made it a point to try out the local street cuisine, it paid to know what to eat and what everyone else did.

Ninyu ate as he watched the people.

A pair of police officers drifted by, each ordering the polish sausage as well and continued on their patrol. The citizens didn't fear them. A janitor sat beside a well-dressed lawyer, chatting about their plans once the Cold Cycle winds down completely. A man spoke on his comm using his native tongue, japanese, and the people didn't bat an eye. He looked like a local, and Combine traders were not unknown on Carse in any case.

Soldiers, officers by their bearing, amiably disparaged each other's choice in condiments. One spoke with a non-local accent, but both wore the 23rd Arcturan Guards' patch on their shoulders.

Ninyu stood, moving closer to the officers as he deposited his garbage. He chewed and smiled gratefully at the owner and cook of the stand, who asked him how his meal was.

The food became tasteless as an unpatriotic thought blossomed deep in his mind. The proprietor handed him a mint and he banished the thought, smiling at the friendly woman.

Checking his ring-chrono and pretending to be late he nodded to some familiar looking faces, people he had briefly spoken with in the last few days, and moved on.

He was two blocks away when the explosions shook the streets.



===================================


Sevren Interstellar StarPort, New Cartis, Sevren
Rasalhague Military District, Draconis Combine
17 June 3028



At first, Warlord Ivan Sorenson resented the plans Takashi Kurita appended to his orders to raid the Tamar Pact. The plans were copies of those submitted by Theodore Kurita, the revolutionary upstart, when he was stationed in Rasalhague.

Warlord Sorenson viewed himself as a samurai, and he was utterly devoted to the Coordinator. He only worried that Theodore's corrupting influence was begin to affect Takashi's resolve.

Still, he did his duty and studied young Theodore's plans.

It called for aerospace supremacy. Sevren would be garrisoned by the 8th Donegal Guards according to ISF reports, but the world lacked a local aerospace presence. The plan called for two Achilles Assault DropShips and two Leopard-CVs; he increased that to three Achilles and used a Vengeance to dominate the planet from orbit.

They arrived the day after the 8th Donegal Guards jumped out.

The nadir recharge station was quickly occupied with marines. For weeks, incoming DropShips were ambushed on the way to the planet, but not before the marines--DEST trained--seized the JumpShips.

Since they made planetfall, the Warlord oversaw the stripping of Sevren's industries and the shattering of its economy. The planet had borrowed heavily to pay for the cleaning of the nuclear fallout following the Kuritan's previous occupation. The debts were to be paid in refined ores and heavy equipment Sevren specialized in. Now the factories and mines that made those were stripped of all useful equipment. Their shipments seized, their places of business burnt down.

He left the farmers unmolested, taking only enough to send as a tribute to Luthien.

Now he stood, staring at the night sky, waiting for the 8th Donegal Guards to return from their raid. They would find their new homeworld prepared against them.

Grudgingly, Ivan allowed that Theodore had some good ideas.


« Last Edit: 15 January 2013, 20:35:48 by Marwynn »

afterthought53

  • Recruit
  • *
  • Posts: 16
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #86 on: 15 January 2013, 18:30:11 »
Theodore and Yorinaga united. Marcus Kurita is in for interesting times ahead. Its good to see Warlord Sorenson coming around to Theodore's idea and he has taken the first step to being fully devoted to his soon to be new Coordinator. The seizure of jumpships is worrying though as other Lords might escalate and Hanse 's task-force in the Draconis March could cause quite a few problems for the DCMS if he decides to counterattack.

mikecj

  • Captain
  • *
  • Posts: 1749
  • Veteran of Galahad 3028
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #87 on: 16 January 2013, 00:24:43 »
Hmmm, wheels within wheels
There are no fish in my pond.
"First, one brief announcement. I just want to mention, for those who have asked, that absolutely nothing what so ever happened today in sector 83x9x12. I repeat, nothing happened. Please remain calm." Susan Ivanova
"Solve a man's problems with violence, help him for a day. Teach a man to solve his problems with violence, help him for a lifetime." - Belkar Bitterleaf
Romo Lampkin could have gotten Stefan Amaris off with a warning.

snakespinner

  • Captain
  • *
  • Posts: 2412
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #88 on: 16 January 2013, 02:11:10 »
Everybody will start seizing jumpships soon.
I don't know if that was a good idea for Theodore.
Time will tell.
I wish I could get a good grip on reality, then I would choke it.
Growing old is inevitable,
Growing up is optional.
Watching TrueToaster create evil genius, priceless...everything else is just sub-par.

mikecj

  • Captain
  • *
  • Posts: 1749
  • Veteran of Galahad 3028
Re: The Wolves and the Dragons (AU)
« Reply #89 on: 16 January 2013, 14:24:05 »
Somebody is going to pay
There are no fish in my pond.
"First, one brief announcement. I just want to mention, for those who have asked, that absolutely nothing what so ever happened today in sector 83x9x12. I repeat, nothing happened. Please remain calm." Susan Ivanova
"Solve a man's problems with violence, help him for a day. Teach a man to solve his problems with violence, help him for a lifetime." - Belkar Bitterleaf
Romo Lampkin could have gotten Stefan Amaris off with a warning.