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Ian Davion - Golden Lion (Chapter Art)

Ian Davion, Golden Lion[]

Chapter 16 – Escalation[]

Battle of Yulan River[]

Location: Yulan River Basin, Gei-Fu - Capallen Confederation

Colonel Patrick Kell's walked his modified TDR-5SS Thunderbolt to the crest of a hill overlooking the mighty Yulan River swollen with monsoon rains.  This season was a particularly bad one and it showed.  The large river had burst its banks and filled the whole of the plain with mud and silt that was bogging down the heavy tanks of the St Ives Janissaries and 3rd Capellan Defense Force.

Thunderbolt (In Combat by meltdonw14)


The lighter main battle tanks of the Janissaries, medium weight Tiger 22s with their modernized LBX main guns were able to cross with minor difficulty and fared well against the heavier Pos of the 3rd Capellan Defense Force.

A squad of Boeing Jump Bombers flew overhead booming over his mech while racing toward battlemechs bearing the flag of Warrior House Ijori.  Missiles and cannon fire filled the air with flak taking down half the flight but the other half dropped their lethal payload.  In a rush only two mechs were hit with bombs while the others burst in the river spraying brown water all over the battlefield.

The explosions rent armor and caused more mobility kills among the bogged down CDF tanks.  Crews popped their hatches and threw satchel charges into the cabin to deny it to enemies that could have been their brothers in a different world.  Overloaded trucks filled with grim faced infantry slowed down to allow the men to hang onto the side.  Even if their tank was lost they could still carry a rifle for Romano.

Patrick Kell put his artificial hand to his chin, it was so lifelike from the outside but it would never feel the same.  “Over and over again in this war.  You loyalists hold on beyond all reason.  You have to know this war was hopeless.  Put down your guns and save your sons and daughters for god's sake!”

A female voice came in over his Thunderbolt's comm-link, it was the Battalion Tactical Officer Major Tanya Black.  “Colonel Kell.  Detecting three incoming SRBMs on Long Range.”

“Shit!  Pull back Janes.” yelled Kell over the coms

The Janissary tanks stopped in the middle of the marshy field and attempted to reverse tracks.  Some of them were bogged down in the mud while others broke free.  Their tight formation was snarled as the TOADs (TOp Attack Detonation) fell down and detonated above them spreading heavy sub-munitions that tore into track and turret.  The Warrior House Battlemechs moved forward while the Janissaries were retreating attempting to finish off the wounded.  The St. Ives mechs rushed into the fray as well, they were already heavily damaged but so were the Warrior House units.

“Puppies lets get biting!”

The Kell Hounds 3rd Battalion, the “Patrick's Pups” pushed forward, two mobile lighting companies of light and medium mechs or vehicles anchored by a solid heavy and assault Battlemech Group.  The lighting companies raced over the hill throwing up clumps of mud and occasionally falling in a too deep soft spot.  The Drillson, Pegasus, and Maxim hovercraft blazed over the terrain only to be interrupted by a counter charge of Regulator, Condor, and Harasser hover vehicles from across the river.  The fast moving groups were forced to engage one another in order to ensure that neither side could exploit their sheer speed and flanking ability.

The Loyalist force paused in their own advance to face the incoming attackers and split up with half pursuing each force, the wounded reformists and the still fresh Hounds.  “What do they think they are doing?  Bite and tear Hounds.”

Just then the ground in front of the Kell Hounds began to explode, “What is that?”

The kindly female voice came in over the comm-link, “Looks like Thumpers somewhere nearby.  I'm vectoring in a Boomerang to see if I can get a fix on them hang tight Third.”

The Kell Hounds opened up to limit their damage from the incoming artillery.  Then his long range Aerial RADAR picked up something different, VTOLs hover over a nearby hillside and pitched toward his force.  “Guns get outside.”

The Jagermech and Rifleman in the company positioned themselves on the near side toward the choppers.  H-7C Warriors equipped with long range missiles would be a nuisance but nothing to scary as long as his ground-to-air cover held.  A Thumper shell exploded right in front of his Thunderbolt damaging the front armor with fragments and almost causing him to lose his footing in the resulting crater.  The thick mud clung to his mechs feet and the machine was forced to work harder to free itself with each step.  “Last time I fight in a swamp.”

Rifleman (by meltdonw14)


“I found the artillery Playboy.”

“Whereabouts TacOps?”

“Ten klicks away looks like they are preparing another TOAD launch.  The TELs were up.”

JaegerMech (by tplambert)


“Roger.  All forces minimum concentration.  TacOps how long until we can get a bomb on them.”

“Not soon enough.  SRBMs away.”

Patrick's mech torso twisted to see the faint plume of flame reaching up into the sky from the direction.  “Its not coming your way, Playboy.  Trajectory is southbound.”

“But that's toward you.”

“Affirmative.  Five minutes to impact.”

At the Kell Hounds base two TOAD SRBMs fell down on the dropships followed by a third one containing the potent nerve agent UrbStryc-A.  All hands for the dropships and support crews were lost to the gas as the previous explosions had severely damaged their vessels.

Meeting with the Wolves[]

07/12/3041 Location – New Avalon, Federated Suns

First Prince Hanse Davion sat on the edge of the Fountain of Nike inside Castle Davion enjoying the contrasting feeling of cool stone and the warm breeze.  It was a beautiful summer day in Avalon City he had chosen a good time to come back to the Capitol.  He looked at the gold watch on his tanned wrist, “Where is he?”

Colonel Jaime Wolf walked across the courtyard of Castle Davion, his Wolf's Dragoons formal uniform was immaculate and gave him the air of a powerful noble despite being a mere legendary man-at-arms.  His weapon had been removed by Castle security but he still looked fearsome for his age.  They entered the Castle Gardens which were quartered off by hedges and currently being worked on by the groundskeepers.

He turned to a younger woman next to him, she shared a common resemblance, dark hair and eyes with a pleasant though strong face.  She wore the same uniform but was based on the rank insignia was of lower rank, “Maeve stay in the gardens with Marisa and the children.  I will speak to the First Prince alone.”

Aff, Colonel.”  The young woman turned around and headed back to where the teenage girls, their brother, and mother were, “Lets go into the hedge maze girls.  Dad has to conduct some business.”

The younger of the girls was excited with all the pleasant landscaping, “That sounds like fun, V.  These gardens are so pretty when we will get something like this at home?”

“I don't know, Rachel.  You will have to ask father.”

The five of them headed toward one of the other quadrants, Colonel Wolf turned and faced a different one.  A long series of Arches that led toward the Castle Proper on the other side of a short stout wall capable of concealing a Battlemech behind it.  The Albion Arches were wide enough for armored vehicles to pass in single file or at least twelve men to stand abreast.  Jaime felt eyes on him and as his eyes got used to the darkness he could see plain clothes MIIO agents in the shelter of the doorways that led off the main thoroughfare.

On the far side he could see his destination, the Fountain of Nike within the Western Bailey.  Inside the courtyard fountain was Lady Nike in stone with bronzed sword raised high.  As he cleared the gap a man stood up from where he was sitting on the fountain's stone ledge.  Colonel Wolf walked up to him, “Hanse, you're looking mighty hale and hearty for a man of apparently declining health.”

Hanse Davion shook the man's hand, “A bit of subterfuge for public consumption.  I'm nearly back to my fighting weight and Dana appreciates the time that I can now spend with her.”  He took a swig of a green mixture in a clear plastic bottle, “The food continues to be dreadful despite the kitchen's best efforts.”

“How is your wife?” Jamie asked

“Quite well.  She is still on Lexington with our daughter.  Yvonne has done a lot of growing up in the past year.  Andrew is off on his first tour in the Outback.  I'm grateful that she has Tancred and he her.  The young man has a bright future ahead of him.  Your family?”

“MacKenzie finally got his chance to go to the Magistracy.  Emma Centrella has been reorganizing the MAF and he was willing to work for a reduced fee with some of our more promising recruits.

According to him the MRB is setting up a hiring hall on Hardcore and he wanted to be the first to put his name on the charter.  Maeve, Marisa, and the others may currently be lost in your hedge maze.”

Hanse put his hand under his chin, “Why would they build a MRB hiring hall that far out on the Rim and deny you one on Outreach?”

“That is what I've come to talk to you about.  I sent Mack to the Magistracy with an ulterior mission.  He is there to monitor the situation and as a backup.

Outreach is being raided heavily by Capellan and Combine forces under false flags and my WolfNet Operatives on Tikonov were burned along with Mallory's men.  Someone is working against us and I think it is the same people working against you, COMSTAR.”

Hanse didn't know that Jaime was watching him but figured that it might have been the case.  Alexi Mallory was the deepest cover operative in the DMI and now he had been promoted to head Spymaster.  The previous primary, Quintus Allard, had gone rogue with his daughter-in-law and setting up StIMI with other loyal to him but rogue officers.

Alexi had been sent to Atreus to help Ian deal with the new situation developing there.  Hanse had fewer state responsibilities now that he was 'infirm' so he could take on the thing he really enjoyed the most, Subterfuge.  This Fox was a cunning one.  “So you knew about, Alexi?”

“My WolfNet operatives were very good.  If ROM ferreted them out then we have both underestimated Precentor Senaca.

So I have to ask you, First Prince.  Is your offer of the Duchy of Quentin is still on the table?”

Hanse was taken aback by that statement.  He had offered the Dragoons that Duchy shortly after their final betrayal by the Draconis Combine.  They had refused it instead asking that he validate their claim to Outreach against the Capellan Confederation who would not be able to resist the AFFS after the Victoria War, “You would leave Outreach?”

“Either we leave soon or we will be driven out.  We can move the Blackwell factory components to the Valley of Steel alongside Independence Weaponry.  Additionally I have some of the old DoME Terraforming units that might be able to regenerate the atmosphere.”

One of Hanse's eyelids lifted curiously, if Jaime was telling the truth there were a lot more questions than answers.  “Wait, what?  You have Terraforming tech?”

Jaime presented a datachip to Hanse Davion, “...and more.  Do we have a deal then First Prince Davion?”

Hanse took the offered chip, “I think we do, Duke Wolf.  Stay for dinner, we have much to discuss I think.”

New Life, Old Ambitions[]

Location: Hagia Sophia, Terra

27 year old Stavros Lambda (Photon Brett-Marik) and 7 year old Titus Lambda (Carlos Marik) stood atop the Hagia Sophia at first light taking a moment to appreciate their first Terran Sunrise.  A firm authoritative voice came from behind them, “Marvelous isn't it?”

Both turned around and gasped at the sight of Anastasious Focht's cybernetic eye and other prosthetic, such things were readily hidden in their home realm.  “Precentor Martial.  To what do I owe this honor?”

“I always make a little time in my day to great VIPs that have recently arrived on Terra.  We are pleased you have decided to join us Photon Brett.”

“That's not my name anymore.” Stavros said

Focht zoned out for a millisecond while something likely flashed on his cold blue cybernetic eye.  “Of course, Stavros. What a fine nom de guerre.  Precentor Seneca risked a lot lifting you three off Tamarind.”

“My mother will not admit that I managed to escape her, but will quietly post a bounty for me.  That's just how she is.  Always looking to cover herself first, she has my brother she doesn't need me.”

Anastasius unconsciously stroked his face tracing the scars he endured for the Steiners and his cousin Katrina's betrayal.  “Yes, family drama is something I am intimately familiar with.”

Focht stared at the boy before softening his ruined gaze as to not frighten him, “What do you think of Terra, young man?”

Carlos/Titus looked out over the Staits, “This place is wonderful.  I'd love to stay forever.”

“Well you can your Uncle and I have a some business to discuss however.  Say my assistant Tanya will be around soon.  Would you like her to take you and your mother on a tour of Istanbul?”

“When will I see you, Pho?”

“Its Stav, and you're Titus.”

“But my name is Carlos.” little boy answered

“Not here it isn't.”  Photon looked over the Anastasius who spoke calmly to the child, “I suppose we can see each other around lunch.”

“Sure I will go find my mother, she said she was saying morning prayers.”

“Good boy.  We'll be right here.”  Titus ran off across the gardens, “You did a noble thing when you adopted that boy and married his mother.”

“My cousin had good taste, Farah is a remarkably gorgeous young woman.  Pity Duncan died so soon, his loss is my gain however.”

“Well now, Stavros.  Concerning our business.  I have a black ops unit in training that needs a commander.  If you want the assignment you can have it.”

“Just like that, you aren't afraid I will choke like I did in the Jungle?”

“That was bad luck.  If he missed you would have killed Ian Davion is a perfectly legal way.

I want Uriel Vasely, I read you're file you're every bit as good as Duncan Marik might have been if he had lived if not more so.  Your family didn't allow you to flourish and solidify your skills something I'm also familiar with.  I want to give you that chance.”

“What kind of hardware are we talking about?  COMSTAR isn't known for its army.”

“To be fair the same could be said of your Free Worlds League.  However, you'd be surprised what we have kept ready for action.  For you I was thinking something special, a SLDF grade Black Knight.”  The offer was an astounding one, Photon hadn't expected to be offered a job in the COMGUARDs when he was “rescued” by ROM.

Photon saw a just showing 24 yo Farah and Titus walking toward him through the gardens, “I'm in.”

“Good, I brought it with me.  Let's see whether your year off has dulled your edge.”

“Now its your turn to be surprised, Precentor Martial.”

“You can't surprise me.  I've been in this game for a long time.”

Farah stopped and waited to be invited over to the conversation.  She entered it warily as Focht' cybernetics were horrific to her. “Who is this man Photon?”

“This is COMSTAR's Precentor Martial Anastasius Focht.  Precentor, this is my wife Farah bin Al'Hassam of Mosiro.”

Focht responded with a courtly bow well practiced on Tharkad.  “A pleasure, Ma'am.  I am here to offer you husband a job in my organization.  He may be traveling frequently but will have a home here on Terra somewhere pleasant courtesy of COMSTAR as part of his rich compensation.”

“You told me you had given up being a Mechwarrior to spend more time with Carlos.”

“I have, Farah.  The Precentor is offering me a role as a strategist on how to protect isolated HPGs from pirates.  Surely that is a worthwhile way to spend a career even if it does require some travel I will always return.  COMSTAR's services are invaluable to the Inner Sphere, I'm trying to protect it from a threat of its own making.”

She didn't seem convinced but chose to bring up her objections at a later time.  “I still don't like it.  Our child needs a father.”

He walked over to her and embraced her, “And I shall be the best one I can be when I am here which will be most of the time.  COMSTAR can rush me home from the farthest Rim world in two weeks if I need to return in a hurry for us.  I doubt I will leave soon.”  Focht nodded, “There is much to do here on Terra like go shopping for a house.

The loveliest one we can find.  First though I have to do a lot of paperwork so Precentor Focht's assistant is going to take you on a tour and shopping trip while I do so.”

All he was thinking of though was revenge with a brand new 'Mech and what sort of paint job he was going to give it.


Historical Interlude 3 (3043)[]

3043 – The Capellan Civil War

St Ives Compact Premier Candace and Capellan Chancellor Romano Liao's Civil War continues to consume men and resources in the fires of war fueled by outside influence and their own hatred for one another. Their brother Mandrinn Tormano Liao's Free Capella, a ‘humanitarian’ non-profit dedicated to housing and caring for refugees and advocating for a swift end to the conflict, operates out of Solaris VII attracting funding through affiliation with the Federated Suns’ charismatic Prince Ian Davion and Lyran Commonwealth’s Archon Melissa Steiner's (self-interested) benevolence. In the Rimward Periphery the Taurian Concordat and Magistracy of Canopus have chosen opposite sides and a new low intensity front has opened in the Fronc Reaches and Aurigan Coalition between the two powers. Each seek to carve up (or be rewarded with) parts of the Rim-ward Confederation presently controlled by Candace Liao’s St Ives Compact.

Within the Draconis Combine Coordinator Takashi Kurita has handed over the role of Supreme Commander of the DCMS to his son, the brilliant heir-apparent Gunji-no-Kanrei Theodore Kurita. Free to focus on revitalizing his realm knowing its security is in good hands the Coordinator has focused on strengthening the Pillars of Gold, Teak, and Jade rooting out incompetent and corrupt officials with the aid of COMSTAR and in some allowing the order has taken over with tacit permission from Luthien. Theodore’s reforms of the DCMS have created a more effective military force that follows him as opposed to their regional Warlords. Additional recruiting from previously ‘undesirable’ (women, criminals, the poor, etc.…) populations have fostered greater dedication and appreciation of the DCMS throughout the Combine while only marginally affecting its superior quality. However expansion of Ghost, Legion (Arkab or of Vega), and Ryuken formations has caused friction with the Provincial Regulars and elite Sword of Light.

First Prince Hanse Davion and Wolf's Dragoons of Quentin are on a war footing, DCMS forces regularly raid border territories while both Liao sisters have struck supply depots within the Capellan March to ensure a steady supply of material for their own war machines. Taurian border territories have begun to heat up as Thomas Calderon’s revanchist Concordat once more try to reclaim territory that has been Federated Suns since the Reunification War. All while Outworlds Alliance privateers working with Candace operate all along the Draconis March to Sarna attacking Combine vessels but drawing pirate hunting DCMS forces into battle with AFFS garrisons in defiance of both their President and the First Prince.

On Atreus every faction is vying for the Free World’s League to pick a side tipping the balance of power in their favor. With its own internal divisions the Parliament of Worlds finds itself pulled in many different directions and paralyzed with indecision. Having endured a recent Civil War the FWLM has no appetite to occupy Capellan space whereas the AFFS and LCAF cannot as they face DCMS pressure on their own borders. Time is running out however as the refugee crisis and border raids continue to escalate in both intensity and scope. Mercenaries and pirates come from as far away as the Oberon Confederation and Hanseatic League to exact their pound of flesh from the carcass of a flailing, failed state. As the Capellan Confederation rots away it threatens to consume the whole Inner Sphere in its death throes.

Premier Candace Liao finds herself under greater pressure on her new temporary capital of Victoria as her sister Romano’s CCAF is aided directly and indirectly by the DCMS’ Genyosha, Ryuken-San and Roku, as well as 2 Ghost Regiments. Within her territory the COMGUARDs protect their own and she is left with merely superior covert forces from her father-in-law, a defensible line starting from Teng and Texlos, an abundance of supplies from Magestrix Centrella, and a Taurian Concordat under pressure from Duke Morgan Hasek-Davion’s New Syrtis Fusiliers. Without additional support from either New Avalon or Atreus what seemed like it would be a quick victory will turn into a long defeat. She needs leverage in order to strengthen her fragile position and an option might have just presented itself.

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