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Chapter 15[]

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

Prologue, Book 2, The Hammer Falls

Condor class Dropship, Leftanant Harvey Bouan, Federated Commonwealth Navy
Atmosphere of Malibu
currently 125,000 feet AGL and diving fast.

Jade Falcon Occupation Zone
0335 Hours, September 19th, 3056

..I will by the end of the night, bury this knife to the hilt in the blackest Falcon heart on Malibu. Let’s let these ****** pidgeons know who they decided to screw with!”

Kommandant Megan Lucas, Commander, 2nd Battalion, 3rd Crucis Lancers Jump Infantry, 3rd Crucis Lancers RCT

The dropship buffeted in Malibu's thick atmosphere as the “Harvey B.” as she was affectionately known to her crew and passengers alike, rocked and shimmied like an epileptic snake through the planetary atmosphere at speeds approaching Mach 4.

All Leftenant Mike Henley, Platoon Leader for 1st Platoon, Bravo Company, 2/3rd Crucis Lancers Jump Infantry could think of was that perhaps he should have become a ‘Mechwarrior. No, I had to be a pogogrunt like dear old Uncle Fred was in the 4th War. He’d graduated with honors early last year from Goshen’s OCS, and had only just joined the 3rd Crucis Lancers RCT last month.

It was his first command, and from the word go, it had been an uphill battle to get through the day without embarrassing himself in front of his men, let alone his company commander. His performance on one night route march back on Pasig had earned an epic ass chewing that had questioned everything from his intelligence to his parentage, to even what kind of graduates were leaving Goshen these days, all laced with profanity Henley had never heard in his life. Hauptmann Wainright already didn’t like him, Wainright had come up through the ranks, earning a commission during the Clan Invasion with the 42nd Avalon Hussars, and losing a lot of friends in the bargain. And, near as Henley could figure? Wainright hadn’t bet much on Henley lasting much past the initial drop.

Emotions had been running high before the “Harvey B.” had undocked from the jumpship and began a high G run to the planet. They’d arrived only yesterday at a pirate point, and the pirate point had been close, with the high-G transit only taking 8 hours to reach atmosphere. Word was there was a full-fledged uprising already going on against the Falcons on world, with some rumoring that MI-6 or Loki had something to do with it. In short, they’d be too busy putting down the rebels to do much about the incoming FedCom invasion force, or so that was the hope.

It had been emotional before the undocking, with pre-battle speeches being played over wallscreens by Marshal Zardetto, who’s gravelly, fatherly voice had stated in part: “We’ve come back, as we promised, and our people’s eyes will be upon us. We come bringing freedom from the Clans. I expect every man and woman in this RCT to do their duty to the utmost. Don’t fail our Archon-Prince, don’t fail the Commonwealth, and more importantly, don’t fail our regiment, our family.”

His battalion commander, a red-headed petite female Kommandant, with fiery green eyes and a voice like thunder by the name of Lucas had given a far more bloodthirsty speech.

“Ladies and Gentlemen, all we will have is each other when we hit that slipstream. We do this for love, love of our nation, love of our families left behind whom we do not want the Clans dictating to. And most of all? We do this for love of each other. We are Lancers. And we do not break promises to each other. And I promise you this..” she then pulled a wicked looking jump knife from a sheath clipped to her LBE suspenders running vertically across her left torso and held the knife aloft over her head “..I will by the end of the night, bury this knife to the hilt in the blackest Falcon heart on Malibu. Let’s let these ****** pidgeons know who they decided to screw with!”.

There were many loud bellows of “H-Minus”, which was the regiment’s motto in response. But that had been three hours ago, As Henley looked around the cabin, he took in the sight while he still could. The troop bay was bathed in a red glow from both the battle lighting, and the glow of the excited atmosphere interacting with the ship as it reentered. Men and women alike were sporting mohawks and shaved heads. Everybody had painted faces, most in camo patterns, but some had alleged tribal sigils painted in whatever materials had been available. Everyone was as the regimental sergeant major put it “amped up for this drop.”

One of his snipers named Pelley from Zavijava had decorated his Federated Long Rifle in tribal beads promising Henley “Don’t worry LT, we’re going to take many scalps today. The Great Father is with us.” That young man was currently asleep…smiling. He was 19, with dark caramel skin, almond eyes, and had a wicked looking club attached to the side of his assault pack on his waist.

Horns began to hoot as the red "ready" light clicked on, announcing they were 5 minutes out from the LZ, with jumpmasters bellowing "5 minutes." A loud mechanical whine soon sounded, announcing the dropship door was sliding open. Kommandant Lucas grinned ferally. “Hook up! Stand up! Shuffle to the door! H-Minus!” she shouted.

The entire bay roared as one over the sound of the slipstream passing the dropship’s hull and over the cacophony of hundreds rising to their feet, weighed down by parachutes and all the other gear paratroopers took into battle.


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