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Federated Suns Reborn (Chapter Cover)

The Federated Suns Reborn
- Chapter 191

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January 3071

Shift Focus to the Word of Blake Threat[]

As January, progressed the AFFS's huge realignment from fighting on the Draconis Front to preparing for combat against the Word of Blake Protectorate continued and built up momentum. Large scale forces were assembled, huge supply depots began to fill up with the military industrial output of the whole realm and personnel staging posts began to fill with troops who could be assigned to replace losses in front line commands - heavily leaning towards infantry troops and tank crews as almost every Mechwarrior was already assigned to a command. Command posts filled to capacity as the staff's of dozens of RCT's and their commanding officers took up residence. The first warships, those which had suffered little to no damage also began trickling into the various rendezvous systems - although the bulk of the Federated Suns Navy was still refitting from combat with Kurita forces. Which wasn't to say that the troop movements were unguarded. As well as various warships which did not require refit large numbers of naval fighter wings, independent fighter wings and assault and pocket dropship squadrons were deployed to ensure that the troop and supply convoys went unmolested.

While the High Command was eager to launch an attack as soon as possible, they were by now accustomed to large scale troop movements and operations. While plans had been put in place for years for hitting the WOB forces, these had largely been contingent on what units would be available - for instance many of the plans called for the 1st Kestrel Grenadiers to form the lynch pin of an assault force based at Errai. However given the mauled status of the Grenadiers, who had been involved in some of the heaviest fighting on the Draconis Front and from which they had yet to recover from, the Kestrel Grenadiers were not available for any short or even medium term plans for operations. Such occurrences were common but thankfully the plans had been under constant review and suitable replacement forces had been allocated to task forces which had been deprived of a planned for RCT or regiment. Even still these revisions would require the AFFS to have some time to gain it's feet and prepare. Which would also allow time for the warships of the Federated Suns Navy to complete their refits, the supply depots to be filled and supply lines secured.

The Blakist Launch Probing Attacks[]

The WOB seeing the growing juggernaut bearing down upon them decide to launch a probing attack to test the waters as to whether or not to launch a full scale offensive or whether to dig in and prepare for the onslaught. Deliberately assigning the Epsilon Eridani Protectorate Guard to the probe, they risk little if it goes wrong. The former troops of the Epsilon Eridani SMM mount a combined arms regimental raid upon the key command center of Terra Firma. Hoping to appease their WOB masters with a quick strike and retreat they concentrate their efforts on the historically infamous "bad luck" unit the Wilson's Hussars. The Hussars consisting of 6 companies of veteran mechwarriors are more than a match for the former March Militia turned Epsilon Eridani Guard turned Epsilon Eridani Protectorate Guard in skill and thanks to the extensive refit they received on Bell they are similarly better equipped than the raiders, although much of this equipment is "phoenix" designs of refitted older battlemechs. Although outnumbered the Wilson's Hussars have the edge in Battlemechs and fight a careful campaign of mobility against the larger Protectorate Guard force - only really struggling when the Guard deploy almost a companies worth of battle armored troopers. However, the tide turns when the 11th Avalon Hussars lighter elements sweep in to aid their mercenary allies. The light armoured brigade and the 19th Avalon Jump Infantry, 421st and 422nd Avalon Light infantry along with a battalion of cavalry Battlemechs have the "traitor" SMM troops hurriedly falling back to their dropships. Of the four companies of battlemechs, three companies of armour and three mixed companies of infantry deployed for the raid barely half of the battlemechs and less than a third of the infantry and armour make it back to Epsilon Eridani.

Trial of Colonel Jaffray and situation for his troops[]

The Northwind Highlanders accept garrison contracts for all of their regiments for the first time. Until now only some of the units were officially hired by the Federated Suns even when on Northwind - however given the costs of rebuilding and maintaining their existing strength the various Colonels and Elders agree to long term garrison contracts with extremely generous terms as well as provisions for off world offensive missions. At the same time Colonel Jaffray's trial begins, causing much animosity on Northwind. His former "Jaffray's Own" Mechwarriors (who are often referred to as mutineers by those less than favorably disposed to them) see some backlash against them even from within the ranks of the Highlanders, however most have been forgiven for defecting with the Colonel given the horrendous losses they suffered on Andurien. The same however cannot be said for Jaffray.

Naval Developments of the FedSuns Navy[]

Given the loss of the Verde repair slip and shipyard - although both were to be rebuilt from Kurita reparations - and the wear and tear on the fleet as well as combat damage the High Command at Fleet Admiral Buchwald's strong suggestion decided to not only rebuild Verde's repair slip but also build a new one while also doubling the repair facilities in the hidden system of Arcadia. Surprisingly the new repair slip to be built was to be located at Tikonov, the home port of the grandly titled "Third Fleet" which for now was the 8th Corvette Flotilla. It was felt that the League March was in need of a repair slip and the recent upsurge in pro-FedSuns sentiment on the planet as well as it's combined closeness to the front lines but being located at least a few jumps back would be ideal. If it went well a small dropship or jumpship yard might also then be located there. The Tikonov repair slip was the "standard" repair slip size, capable of ships of up to a million tons or two smaller vessels, while the Arcadian second slip would be able to fit a battleship of the Iron Duke class or up to four smaller ships.

Texas (Delranes Fighting Ships 3061)

Iron Duke Class Battleship, FSS Iron Duke

The FSS Iron Duke itself finally made an appearance in January 3071. Forming the core of the 1st Battleship Squadron (and for now it's only battleship or indeed warship) it entered orbit over the First Prince's forward command post at Addicks. There it joined the 1st Cruiser Squadron, 2nd Destroyer Squadron, and 7th Corvette Flotilla which (at least in large part) were stationed there. Plans were in place to add to this naval formation which for now constituted the "First Fleet" along with the 4th Cruiser Squadron (undergoing refit) and 4th Corvette Flotilla (stationed at Dieron). Fleet Admiral Buchwald was strongly pushing for the 3rd Carrier Battle Group to be allocated to First Fleet, although Duke Hasek was keen to retain it as the flagship of Second Fleet which was based in the Capellan March. He had some support from the admirals in charge of the Naval Fighter Training facility there - which is using the FSS Aaron Sandoval to teach aerospace pilots carrier operations. Duke Hasek is aware this is a fight he is going to lose but is hoping to at least cause the rest of the High Command to agree that when the FSS Andrew Terlecki completes in March that it be assigned to replace the FSS Aaron Sandoval.

Fox Class Corvette (in orbit from MW3 art revamped)

Fox I Class Corvette

At Filtvelt two Fox I Class corvettes are completed and immediately handed over to their Lyran crews. Both ships begin moving as quickly as they can through the Federated Suns heading for the Lyran Alliance undertaking their training cruises en-route. At the same shipyard two Fox II corvettes are completed for the Federated Suns Navy, the FSS Mahoni and FSS Millray  which are assigned to the 1st Battleship Squadron as escorts. Two of the three destroyed Fox I corvettes over Verde, the FSS Remagen and FSS Mirach are ordered replaced from the Filtvelt yard - with the new ship's plaques being crafted from metal from the two destroyed warships.

Fox Class Corvette (Delranes Fighting Ships 3061)

Fox II Class Corvettes

Two additional Fox II corvettes complete at New Syrtis, the FSS Zion and FSS Elgin. Both ships are assigned immediately to on the FSS Mahoni and FSS Millray in protecting the FSS Iron Duke over Addicks. The FSS Sheraton and FSS Acala are laid down in their place. Also completing at New Syrtis is the FSS Dainty - which is assigned to the 4th Carrier Battle Group. The FSS Devonshire is laid down in it's place.

The FSS Duncan and FSS Duchess are completed at Galax. Both Davion III destroyers are dispatched to join the 2nd Carrier Battle Group as the carrier FSS Ran Felsner's close escorts. The destroyers FSS Descartes and FSS Duchain are laid down in the empty slips and are due to complete by January 3073.

Novaya Zemlya's shipyards complete four Fox I corvettes for Comstar and the crews take possession of them by the end of the month. They are assigned to the 2nd Independent Squadron - bringing that formation to 24 Fox I corvettes, larger than both their First and Second Fleets combined in number of warships. The 2nd Independent Squadron along with those two fleets have moved up to near or indeed within the WOB Protectorate in preparation for combat.

Developments in Industry[]

On Outreach Blackwell Industries finally completes it's Marauder II & IIC line, however to call it problematic would be misleading. Quality control issues ranging from armor plating to the wiring for the weapon systems plagues the first machines built at the new line, and output remains drastically below projections. After nearly a month of production and with only six heavily flawed battlemechs completed the line is shut down for a full rebuild - which will take until June. NAIS is contacted for aid and in payment the first six production models are handed over for total rebuilds/experimental processes.

Marauder IIC (in ruined city)

Marauder IIC Assault 'Mech

At the Victoria plant of Johnston Industries, the Penetrator Heavy 'Mech line is completed. A second Sling Light 'Mech production line begins construction although given the underground nature of the plant it isn't expected to go operational until at least Christmas.

Cosara Weaponries plant on Northfield, has it's second Crab battlemech line go operational. The third line is expected to join it by March - while the plant is also now importing laser's from Tancredi in order to bolster sales given the high quality of the laser weapons produced on that world.

Torrence see's the second Glory line go operational for Johnston Industries. Work continues on the Thunderbolt-NAIS line, however New Avalon strongly suggests that any increase in the companies production should be concentrated on Dagger-O OmniFighters at Torrence.

Proserpina see's it's Bulldog Tank line repaired by the end of the month. Sales are at best mediocre and limited to the new March Militias being planned. Bulldog Industries apply for permission to sell to the LAAF and ComGuards given that the AFFS has little interest in the tank. Permission is granted for both sales licenses.

Sparrowhawk (by Colourbrand & Nuclear-Fridge 2-2018)

Sparrowhawk Light Fighter

At Woodbine, the Robinson's plant see's it's first vehicle lines go operational with both Standard APCs and Heavy APCs entering production. If the quality of these machines meets expectations Duke Sandoval is promised a huge contract for both types of APC given the massive expansion of infantry formations of all kinds within the FedSuns.

Within the League March, a further Sparrowhawk Light Fighter production line goes operational on Wei. For now no further expansions are planned to the Jalastar plant there - as the First Prince wishes them to concentrate on expanding their Jabberwocky IndustrialMech lines for now.

Free Worlds League Space: Neogations for reunited the League Fail[]

On Atreus, representatives from Duke Halas arrive to discuss perhaps rebuilding the shattered League. These talks begin to make headway, although all progress is undone when the Grand Duchy of Oriente annexes The Protectorate on the 29th of January. Oriente Hussars, Oriente Fusiliers and even a regiment of the Orloff Grenadiers swiftly move into The Protectorate as peacekeeping forces at the "request" of the military government to prevent a Regulan invasion. Faith in Oriente's good will and intentions is shattered and Tamarind and Atreus refuse to talk to the Oriente representative until such time as Duke Halas explains his naked aggression. This is made worse when Oriente aligned Kiyev formally is annexed to the Grand Duchy itself on the 30th.

Ship Movement from dead System[]

On Arcturus, General of the Armies Adam Steiner sends word to his "ace in the hole" which he inherited from Archon Peter Steiner to move towards Arcturus to reinforce him at his signal. At "abandoned" Finmark within the former Rim Worlds Republic a number of ships jump out of the system and begin heading for Arcturus...

Clans near the Inner Sphere's Periphery[]

At the same time and also within the former worlds of the Rim Worlds Republic Clan Ice Hellion seize control of the abandoned world of Gabenstad. The handful of barely 19th century level farmers who are all that remain of the worlds population are swiftly absorbed into the labourer caste. Their lives even improve with some semblance of medical care and improved farming techniques..

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