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Chapter 10[]

Clover Spear - The Story of the '56 War[]

Prologue, Book 2, The Hammer Falls

August 24th, 3056
Aboard the Union Class Dropship “Luck of the Draw”
Jade Falcon Occupation Zone

The sounds of a dropship in the final stages of a drop were not a new one to anyone who had been in any military in the Inner Sphere for any length of time. The sounds of tools making last minute repairs to ‘Mechs, the clatter of footsteps resounding throughout the ship, the murmur of conversations, pre-battle briefs, and prayers with fellow warriors. All of this was a low key cacophony that any experienced warrior was used to.

But something was different, the men and women of the 26th Lyran Guards knew that. It was the electricity, the feeling of being a coiled spring..all the training, all the lectures, all the feeling of finally, we’re going to hit back at the bastards. The sting of Kobe, Thun, and Tamar was deep in the unit. And while they realized this was the Falcons, and not the Wolves, to the men and women of the 26th who had survived the invasion, any Clanner was a decent stand in to expunge the shame and anger of those days in blood.

Leftenant-General Green-Davion had reorganized the RCT, the new “Steiner’s Boots” was more mobile, and with the new artillery brigades attached to the RCT, hit harder than the old 26th. Morale was high, and some unofficial insigils began to appear, one being the unit insignia of a boot smear, but across a bad caricature of a dead Jade Falcon. Another was chalked throughout the unit on ‘Mechs, armor, even on the sides of dropships. It read simply “For Joy”. Joy Corelli had been a beloved commander of the 26th. Green-Davion had done his best not to replace her, but to put his own stamp on the 26th, but across the unit, it was found the best means of discipline was to say, “Do you want to let Marshal Corelli down?” The 26th was a unit possessed, and out for blood.

So, it was remarkable that a single voice could cut through it all. But, it did. It was a voice all of them had known, known for most of their lives. And the voice, of his son. They were the architects of what was about to come, and it was their time to encourage those about to carry out the plans and preparations that had been the lion’s share of their lives for the past 18 months. Today was the culmination.

“Men and Women of the Armed Forces of the Federated Commonwealth. Today is a day, long in coming. Today, we return to the Tamar March, and we set it free of the Clans. We restore the rightful law and order, and more importantly, justice that the peaceful people of the Tamar March have every right to expect to live under.”

“The way forward will be hard, the Falcons and Vipers are formidable, but they are not the unknown boogyman they were some six years ago. We have beaten the Falcons before, on Morges, and we can and will, beat them again. Brave citizens of the worlds you are about to land on have been harrying them at every step for the last six years, and it’s time for us to ensure that the sacrifices they have made were not in vain. I trust, my fellow soldiers, that you will ensure that happens.”

“I wish I could be with you today. The hardest thing for any leader is to say “go there, and risk your lives” instead of “follow me”. I could not be prouder of all of you. You are our best. And you go forward with the hopes and dreams of billions of people behind you. I know you may scoff at that. You may say “Easy for them, they aren’t here. But they are hopeful. Your families and loved ones pray for your safety and your success. And those below, pray for their deliverance. Let’s let them all know, ETA on that is 18 hours from now.”

“My father stands here with me. His hand on my shoulder as I speak to you know. I can only guess what he was thinking as he ordered our nation into war some twenty years ago. I only know this. I do this with a heavy heart, but one that says, ‘we are in the right’. We cannot fail, we shall not fail, and we shall meet the Falcons and Vipers wherever, and whenever we find them, and show them what steel lies in the constitution of our people’s souls.”

“I won’t recount the many crimes the Falcons and Vipers are guilty of. But I will say this. Nothing less than the future of humanity is at stake here. We are faced with a people who believes in the concept of a ‘master race’. Such an idea should never be allowed to flourish. Though many accuse our Davion subjects about being ‘might making right’. I can assure you, that concept is on full display amongst the Clans. We are, and always have been about, ‘might for right’. It’s time to demonstrate the difference.”

“Remember your training, remember that you are members of the AFFC, and no matter what the Falcons and Vipers might do, we come not for money, or power, or any of the other things we have seen armies fight for throughout history. We come to deliver our people. But do not sully that with reprisals or massacres. Let the courts figure that out. Defeat the enemy, accept his surrenders, and free our people. I know many of you hunger for revenge. I implore you, temper that with mercy.”

“Good luck, my warriors, I know you will do the realm proud.”

Green-Davion’s voice then crackled through the speakers. “I know you all heard the First Prince, and he believes in us. I believe in us. We have trained for this, sweated for this. And this day will be ours. Chance favors the prepared. And we are very prepared indeed. I have a dagger here. It’s one I got off a Kuritan ‘Mechwarrior earlier in my career. I make you a promise, my fellow ‘Boots. By the end of the first day..this knife will be buried to the hilt in the darkest tanker heart to be found on Bone-Norman!”

“Now let’s go get the bastards.”

The dropship, like many in the fleet erupted in cheers.

Clover Spear was underway.

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