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Federated Suns Reborn (Chapter Cover)

The Federated Suns Reborn
- Chapter 90

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June 3068

War Plans and Preparations[]

With the conflict on the Andurien front taking up so much of the CCAF's attention and time the various Davion Intelligence supported resistance groups within the former Sarna March began to step up their activities. A number of civil disturbances and attacks on the infrastructure of Capellan rule in the region were organized by the infiltrated agents and carried out by the local resistance groups. In some cases open armed attacks took place on isolated garrisons, although none successful. What the pro-Davion rebels did however manage to do on a number of worlds was create no-go areas for the local garrisons, securing isolated areas where the rebels could operate almost with impunity and out in the open. For the time being these areas were small and in the most remote areas of the planet, but they did provide safe areas for the AFFS to provide some limited support in the form of small arms and similar equipment.

On the basis of the reports from the former-Sarna March the High Command was in a continual process of updating their War Plan Rat II and Rat III. While some had suggested a more subtle name for these War Plans it was felt that the Capellan Confederation would have to be inhabited entirely by brain dead cretin's not to know that the AFFS had a War Plan for invading their realm and finishing what Hanse Davion had started or at least reclaiming what they had retaken since 3057. Rat II was the invasion and reconquest of the former Sarna March and was the more "prominent" of the War Plans, while Rat III was largely hidden in plain sight by the more prominent Rat II and consisted of an invasion of the Victoria Commonality from the staging worlds of the Sirdar PDZ. This is seen as the vulnerable underbelly of the Capellan Confederation and plan Rat III is designed to gut the Confederation while the bulk of the CCAF is held and ground down by Rat II.

As one of the aspects of this the AFFS proceeded to hire the Lone Star Regiment mercenary command. The Lone Star Regiment are sent to Axton, with small elements filtered through Bell's Hasek Refit Center for some basic upgrades as part of the contract. Another aspect is the request by the First Prince that Clan Sun Jaguar send troops to serve under his personal direction in any combat between the Federated Suns and Capellan Confederation. Khan Nevversan, far from merely dispatching troops personally agrees to lead her own Alpha Galaxy to serve under the First Prince's command. Although she does detach the Silver Keshik from Alpha Galaxy and assign it to Delta.

Aftermath of the failed invasion of Tikonov[]

On Tikonov, the after effects of the failed invasion continue to be felt. Crack downs across the planet on "Free Tikonov" activities are widespread. The Duke goes on the holo-news to speak out against Free Tikonov and points out that the "brave" members of that organization had been willing to combat drop upon their own world and bring the horrors of war to the homes of the people of Tikonov. They were willing to inflict massive damage upon the infrastructure and cities of the world they claimed to love for no other reason than their own political gain and ideology. He makes a damning indictment of "Supreme Leader" William "Bud" Baranov and his overwhelming ambition, comparing him to Amaris with his assumption of the title of "Emperor". He calls upon his people to turn away from the cancer of this toxic organization and unite with him in building for themselves a place within the Federated Suns as one of it's most powerful and wealthy worlds. His message is met with moderate support, helped by the fact that most of the voices which would have been raised against such a message are currently in custody.

Developments in Industry[]

The Federated Suns Navy also see's a number of warships commissioning. In orbit of Galax, five Fox class corvettes commission, the FSS Talcott, FSS McHenry, FSS Ulan Bator, FSS Ozawa. and FSS Lothair. Along with the FSS Markesan, FSS El Dorado, and FSS Redfield these are used to form a 6th Corvette Flotilla which is assigned to patrolling the Outback. This uses up the last of the "free" Fox corvettes, although the 6th Corvette Flotilla will largely be deployed in pairs much as they had previously been done as independent warships. At Kathil, the FSS Reynard Davion commissions and is used to begin forming the 4th Cruiser Squadron, although for now it will consist of only the single ship and will be assigned to the Crucis March. Galax shifts over production from the Fox to the Fox II design in the 5 yards which begin construction of their next batch of corvettes.

The refit yard in Edwards system completes the repairs and refits on the FSS Dahar, FSS Edwards, FSS Ridgebrook, and FSS Bryceland to Fox II. The next 4 ships to enter the refit yard are the 1st Division of the 4th Corvette Flotilla - the FSS Robinson, FSS Antrim, FSS Murmansk, and FSS Brest. These will be be finished in December 3068. The plan is to give each corvette flotilla at least an upgraded division as soon as possible. This will be sped up with the 2 additional refit slips at Verde and Novaya Zemlya finish in December, with the FedSuns then having the capacity to upgrade a full flotilla at the same time.

On Chesterton, the newly built Dervish line has finished upgrading to the cutting edge Dervish-O OmniMech. The first of these new omnimechs will be used to upgrade the 5th Crucis Lancers RCT that is garrisoning Chesterton. Further runs of the omnimechs will be routed to the 2nd Davion Guards RCT and the 2nd & 3rd Lexington Combat Guards on nearby worlds. A second line for the omnimech begins construction literally almost as soon as the initial line is upgraded. This is part of the Federated Suns push to mostly expand production of the higher end omnimech designs or those designs which have no duplicated production site at the current time.

At Markesan, the New Earth Trading Company add's a second Gabriel scout vehicle line, who's production is split between the AFFS and ComGuards. By now the huge sprawling plant is one of the largest single producers of armored vehicles within the entire Federated Suns and perhaps the entire Inner Sphere.

On the planet of Bristol Interstellar Expeditions uncover a large underground garage that contains dozens if not hundreds of Fury command tank. The AFFS immediately snaps up ever single one of them and provides funds and support for building a new facility to produce this superb command tank for the AFFS. When Comstar offers to go half on the costs of this the AFFS reluctantly agrees. While they are happy to have the financial support there are many who wished to keep the design for themselves. This increased funding does allow Jolassa-Kumbold Armored Weapons to begin construction of no less than 3 production lines for the Fury.

Federated Suns Defense Industries see's another vehicle line go operational at their plant on New Damascus. The Fulcrum hover tank enters production. This leaves just the Vedette medium tank and Thunderbird aerospace fighter lines under construction.

At Palmyra the second Javelin-O line enters production. The third production line is scheduled to finish next month, with the final line planned for operations by August. This plant has been singled out to be the single largest supplier of the light omnimech and to specialize in this design. No plans are currently in place to add other battlemech designs or aerospace fighter production to Palmyra.

Capellan Invasion of Grand Duchy[]

Reports from Andurien continue to paint a bleak picture for the Grand Duchy in the first week of the month. Claybrooke voluntarily defects to the Magistracy of Canopus under threat of immence invasion, leaving the worlds of Pilpala and Calseraigne cut off from support. Worse the 1st, 2nd & 4th Liao Guard lift off from their conquered worlds and jump into Andurien at the zenith jump point. The 3rd Liao Guard splits itself between Shiro III and Conquista as a garrison force. Even as the Liao Guard regiments are pushing through the heavy aerospace defences of Andurien a second force of CCAF troops arrive in system. The 7th & 8th Sian Dragoons, escorted by 2 Sian class corvettes, jump in at the nadir jump point. With the bulk of the aerospace defenders already committed to halting or delaying the first invasion force the second one finds itself with an easy run to Andurien. Some commentators do note that it is strange that the more veteran force was offered up as the preliminary force to be blunted in constant aerospace attacks and without warship support, while the green 7th & 8th Dragoons would have been the more logical choice.

Invasion of Baroda[]

The 7th & 8th Sian Dragoons make landfall in and around Baroda, the world's second city. When they are fired upon by a small force of militia tanks with a lance of almost antique battlemech's in support they respond with overwhelming firepower and level an entire suburb in their attack. With the city cowed by such brutal actions the 7th takes up a garrison posting while the 8th continues to expand their initial foothold on the planet. However they soon run into a counter attack by Jaffray's Own. While the reinforced battalion of mercenaries are outnumbered nearly 2:1 they consist of almost entirely hardened combat veterans compared to the still green 8th. Crushing the 8th's 3rd Battalion in a one sided massacre they outflank the remainder of the unit and proceed to begin rolling it up as nearby militia conventional forces rally to them. The 8th is saved from total destruction only by their sister regiment striking out from Baroda and rushing to their aid. Even this relief column is badly bloodied before finally forcing Colonel Jaffray to withdraw his troops. While he has lost nearly half his intial battlemechs, he has managed to salvage almost a full company of former Sian Dragoon battlemechs and returns his force to around 3 companies in strength with a mixed brigade of conventional troops formed around them. He even has enough salvage to equip a provisional company of Andurien militia with battlemechs in support of his command, although these warriors are beyond green. In return he has smashed almost 4 companies of the already under strength 8th Sian Dragoons who are folded into the 7th to replace their own losses. Even with the 2 companies of shattered 8th mechwarriors the 7th is reduced to a little over 7 companies and is forced to go on the defensive until such time as the other invading commands arrive.

Battle for Andurien[]

Unfortunately for the 7th the 1st, 2nd, & 4th Liao Guard ignore their besieged comrades and land directly at the spaceport of Hulan. However this invasion site was predictable and the defending Andurien troops had not only heavily mined the area but also emplaced strong artillery units within striking distance of the military spaceport. The 1st Liao Guard lose nearly half their strength within minutes of landing and the 4th fares little better. However the 2nd, while still inbound responds to the attack on the 1st Wave and lands instead in a combat drop directly upon the artillery batteries shelling the spaceport. In a brutal and one sided battle they destroy the defending artillery units and massacre their crews and support personnel. This bloody battle is indicative of the type of fighting that will become the norm on Andurien. As soon as the spaceport has been secured the mostly intact 2nd Liao Guard begins the push towards Jojoken the capital of Andurien, with the 1st Guard in support and the brutalised 4th remaining to garrison the spaceport.

Mirroring the Battle of Andurien in 3039-40, the 1st Defenders attempt to stop the advance on Jojoken at the town of Callan. However unlike in '39 the invaders don't allow themselves to be caught against the river and proceed to systematically shell and burn the town in front of them to drive the 1st Defenders back and out of the prepared positions. Worse in a number of occasions the Liao Guard call down orbital laser strikes to clear their path through the town. Civilian casualties are horrific and the 1st Defenders find themselves attempting to cover fleeing columns of refugees from attacking Liao Guard mech formations. Falling back towards Jojoken the Defenders harden their resolve to stop the enemy before they can reach the rebuilt city. If the Liao troops respond in the same way as they have at Baroda and Callan the entire city will be engulfed in flames and the civilian death count could rise into the millions. The Defenders attached aerospace wing and the planetary aerospace wings do at least manage to drive the 2 Sian class corvettes from orbit or risk being stung to death, although this costs them nearly half their remaining strength.

Inazuma Class Corvette (Firing - Iron Metal Works version)

Sian Class Corvette in combat

Just as the 1st Defenders of Andurien are preparing to sell themselves in a final stand in the approaches to Jojoken, the comms channels are filled with the sound of bagpipes. The Highlanders have arrived at a pirate point and throw themselves into orbit and proceed to combat drop onto the planet. The Northwind Hussars scream down on top of the damaged Hulan spaceport and it's still reeling garrison. Having received reports of the brutal way in which the Liao Guards have acted the Hussars are in no mood to offer surrender terms and smash the 4th Liao Guard and send the few survivors fleeing towards the 1st & 2nd Guards.

The 1st & 2nd Guards have been attacked by the 1st Kearny Highlanders, but more capable than the 4th have managed to fight their way out of the trap of being caught between the hammer of the Highlander and the anvil of the Defenders. This has however left them 1st Liao Guards as no longer combat effective and they and the survivors of the 4th are folded into the 2nd. This leaves the 2nd Liao Guards at almost full strength and the unit proceeds to break off combat and head for the city of Baroda, linking up with the 7th Sian Dragoons to hold this city, hammering the conventional forces attached to Jaffray's Own on their way into the city.

As June ends, the Anduriens and Capellans hold their lines and begin counting the cost. The 1st Defenders have been reduced to just 5 companies in the brutal fighting at Callan and are struggling with the guilt of the civilian casualties at that battle. The 2 Highlander regiments have suffered moderate losses but remain combat effective and move up to support Jaffray's Own - although contact between the formations are fraught with tension, particularly with Loren Jaffray's former command the Northwind Hussars.

Action on Calseraigne[]

On Calseraigne, the 1st & 2nd Chargers arrive and proceed to attack the planet. Even as the planet attempts to surrender. Taking out their frustration for their losses on Lopez the Chargers smash the garrison of militia troops despite almost every militia unit of the planet having stood down. However their one sided massacre of the planets "defenders" is halted when Sian orders the 1st Chargers to immediately head for Andurien while the 2nd settles down to garrison Calseraigne.

Request for Support[]

Chancellor Sun-Tzu Liao also seeks to have the Magistracy commit the 1st & 2nd Magistracy Highlanders to the battle on Andurien to help support his badly battered troops. He makes the point that this is their chance to knock the Andurien's out of the war and force them to surrender. If the war goes on, then theoretically the League or Federated Suns might intervene - and force the Canopians from their war gains... With visible reluctance the MAF agree's to dispatching their own Highlanders to Andurien in July...

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