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Chapter 56[]

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

The Mad Dragon's Frustrations[]

Field HQ of Miyako Kurita
150km Southwest of Hamai-Zaki
Dieron Military District
Al’Nair, Draconis Combine
October 14th, 3057

Miyako Kurita looked on at the situation map in the holotank. She was irritated to say the least. These two Direron Regular regiments have proven to be far more competent than either my intelligence staff or pre-war information led me to believe. So far, the 15th and 44th Dieron were far more competent than anyone had realized, and they were fighting the DCMS’s supposed masters of mobile warfare, the Ryuken, to a standstill.


Soldiers look at a Holotable.

What worries me more is reports I am getting that the Usurper has raided garrisons in Benjamin for troops. I’ve heard reports that as many as eight regiments are on the move. They could be moving to check the Ghost Bears. Smoke Jaguars, or Nova Cats…but I am skeptical of this. My O5P sources have dried up. My cousin is probably wringing her hands about what I have been forced to do in this war. She thought

She turned to her executive officer. “Fujita, have we managed to pin down either of the Dieron Regulars regiments?”

“No, Tono. We’re trying, but we’ve had contacts with nothing but the militia of late. And even they have been refusing engagement after engagement.”

She cursed quietly. “Koshinuke!” she spat with not a little contempt. “They choose to dance around us like Davions and not face us as proper samurai.” The irony about that this was how the Ryuken normally fought was not lost on anyone present. But the fact that the civil war was escalating out of control of any of the combatants. The casualties on both sides had been near ruinous, and men and women who had begun the war as simple Busosensei were now Tai-i. And it showed.

The reports from the last engagement between a company of the Ryuken-roku, and elements of a fast hover brigade of the Al’Nair militia, supported by at least a company of 15th Dieron ‘mechs had been nothing short of a fiasco. A lance of Ryuken machines lost, and the rest of the company had held on for dear life until the rest of their battalion had managed to fight their way clear of several ambushes along their line of march and relieve them. The old Ryuken-roku would not have been that sloppy, or headlong. The one she had…that was another story.

Miyako was concerned, she was grasping at shadows, and some of her other regiments were wavering. Especially concerning was reports that the commander of the 16th Legion of Vega and the local militia on Vega were in contact with the Federated Commonwealth! My cousin’s doing, no doubt.

She only hoped Sakomoto was having as many difficulties as she was.

The traitor Kurita has proven most difficult in her latest attempt to seize Al’Nair. We do not believe we can reinforce our units there for at least three months, and it will be with forces that are inferior in skill and training to the Ryuken. Moreover, there are the concerns that the Nova Cats are massing near Pesht and the Smoke Jaguar landings on Xingyang, which is putting further strains on what is left of the Pesht district. We have also heard reports that the Alashain Regulars are massing on their own initiative near Chatham to potentially strike at Ghost Bear targets. We must have the ISF arrest both unit commanders and seize their Jumpships before any unfortunate incidents occur…

  • -   Transcript of briefing of Coordinator Sakamoto, dated 21 October, 3057

Airdropping in on Family[]

Offices of the Duke of Robinson
Ducal Palace, Bueller City
Robinson, Federated Commonwealth
October 18th, 3057

James Sandoval ran his hands across his bare scalp. He ran the force projections through the noteputer for NAQAM again. Victor’s got me on something of a shoestring. But that Combine girl of his has come through, my people in DMI confirm everything she told us. He smiled as a sense of satisfaction filled him. The operational plans were solid, and the transport schedules, though thin, made good use of the transport they did have. All we need now is Victor to let us off the damn leash.

He took in the wood paneling of his office. It was all done in wood from cedar trees, with a huge inlaid Star of David made of mahogany from a tree from Kentares IV. I keep that here to remind myself of that the Snakes are little more than a murderous people and like their true nature, they turned on themselves. Not a surprise.

He thought hard on Victor and Omi, I appreciate our sovereign has found a measure of happiness of late. But I am concerned. My man in Castle Davion has said his Kuritan fiancé (as if she is anything else) has a ruthless edge to her. What did he say, “No better friend, no worse enemy?” Ah yes, he did. I am concerned she is going to put some of that Combine bloodthirstiness into the royal line. I don’t want the Sun and Sword in the business of massacre.

He rose from his desk to proceed over to his window overlooking the training grounds of the Robinson Battle Academy. It was a rainy, dreary day in Bueller. A cold front had blown in from the east, and brought with it a cold, steady rain that drummed lightly against the dermaplast of the window. Below, a cadet in all yellow Chameleon training ‘Mech marched, or more correctly, struggled through the muck one of the lanes on the practice course had turned into. An instructor’s red and black Dervish looked on, with Sandoval imagining the exchange between student and instructor. Sandoval cringed at his own memories of his time on that course. Sergeant Caleb. If you could see me now. Then again, I guess you knew I would be inheriting the family business. He openly wondered if it was Arthur Steiner-Davion out there. He chuckled at that last thought. No Davion would have that much trouble with a Battlemech, no, it’s not him.

Sandoval cleared his head, and thought of his son, who had won a measure of his own reputation doing some dangerous work behind the lines in the leadup to Clover Spear. Alex Mallory spoke of his son’s work and said he had “acquitted himself well with little help or support.” Whatever Tancred had done, it had gotten him the Diamond Sunburst and a fresh set of scars he said little about. Tancred also doesn’t fence much anymore. Something’s broken in him. Something I can’t begin to understand. I’ve seen war. But what he saw. I am not sure I know how to understand, or whom to ask.

Sandoval muttered a small prayer.” אלוהים, אם אתה מקשיב. אנא תן לנו להצליח. אני יודע שנקמה היא שלך. אבל בואו נהיה המכשיר. לדרקון יש הרבה מה לענות עליו.”

He leaned over to his communicator. “Leftenant Bryce. Get my staff in here by 1800. We have a final meeting to hold on NAQAM.”

“Yes, Field Marshal. Should I tell the message center to get the warning orders out?”

“Yes. Get the ball rolling. Time to succeed where we failed in ’39.” Sandoval said with a satisfied smile. But with a third of the assets, a nagging voice in his mind reminded him.

Sandoval returned to the window, and contemplated a universe to come, and his people’s place in it.

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