BattleTech Fanon Wiki

The Kingdom of Umoja is an isolationist Periphery state encompassing a cluster of nineteen inhabited star systems located Anti-Spinward of the Marian Hegemony. Hidden from the eyes of Successor and Periphery states alike by the shimmering dust clouds of the Emerald Veil Nebula, the Umojans have managed to avoid the notice and interference of their more belligerent distant neighbors for centuries, to the point that the very existence of the Kingdom is known to very few beyond their borders, and of those, only an extreme minority are aware that the Umojans are anything more than a typical Periphery bandit kingdom or regressed lost colony.

This is incredibly fortunate for the Umojans, as if the truth of their origins and the capabilities of their civilization were widely known, there is little doubt that the Kingdom would find itself in violent conflict with powers desperate for any advantage against their Sphereward rivals. Well aware of the precariousness of their position, the Umojans take great care to keep the Inner Sphere ignorant.


Several Straws Too Many[]

The peoples of the Kingdom of Umoja trace their roots back to the eastern and central regions of Terra's African continent, and their history to the shameful days of the Reunification Wars.

As Ian Cameron's campaign to "civilize the barbarian Periphery" reached the close of its first decade, it became impossible for the Court of the First Lord to prevent accounts of the brutality and suffering the conquering armies of the Star League inflicted on the citizens of those nations who declined to accept the League's "benevolence" from filtering back to the League's own citizenry. For many who hailed from those parts of Terra that had themselves endured centuries of oppression and sabotage under the tactics and justifications of colonialism themselves, it was impossible to ignore the historical parallels of the present day. As such, citizen protests began to coalesce in such places as Sub-Saharan Africa, India, and South America, primarily led by activists of indigenous descent to those regions, and spread to a number of worlds whose populations had been drawn from the same, backed by wealthy individuals of conscience who had long opposed conquest as a means of bringing the Periphery states into the League.

The First Lord's response to this protest was, with the benefit of hindsight, as predictable as it was swift and brutal. As security forces assaulted peaceful demonstrations as if they were violent riots, it quickly became clear that Cameron had no intention of allowing dissent in his own back yard, and anti-League sentiment, simmering for years in peoples still pained by the scars of centuries of the same old injustices, shifted from a motivation to push their nation to better itself to a resigned disgust and disillusionment. In the following years, for many of the inhabitants of the central and eastern coastal regions of the former African Union, dissatisfaction coalesced into an underground movement to abandon the League entirely. Thus, the protest organizers and their backers withdrew from the streets to quietly lay the foundations of new colonization initiatives under the guise of various commercial projects.

With the cessation of mass protest, First Lord Ian was satisfied that the dissenters had learned their lesson, and turned his attentions back to his war. As such, it came as something of a surprise to employers across the region when some 80% of their workforce failed to report to their places of employ one Sunday in 2591, coinciding with the mass launch of dozens of converted cargo DropShips into orbit under a hard burn toward a group of JumpShips on station at Earth's L1 Lagrange Point. Quickly realizing what had happened, the First Lord was reportedly furious, but also wise enough to understand that the massacre of civilians as they left the system would turn the relative ripples of the first mass protests into waves that could drown his throneworld, and allowed the exiles to leave the system unopposed.

Little did Cameron know that the reach of this conspiracy extended far beyond a few thousand dissatisfied civilians; between the herculean logistical challenge of a war fought on four fronts and the scarcity of the still-new Hyperpulse Generators among the campaign fleets, it would be months before SLDF command was able to confirm that three full BattleMech regiments and a number of their support formations had disappeared from their assignments in the bloody Taurian campaign. It would be another several months before reports of sightings of the missing units' transports alongside a number of civilian vessels trickled in from the Anti-Spinward outback of the Free Worlds League, by which point the deserters were long gone, and any fears that such skilled and well-equipped formations might turn pirate faded in the absence of any further sightings.

With the Reunification War stretching on and public support for Cameron's campaigns waning, it was determined that news of the mass desertion of any frontline unit was already a public image fiasco that the SLDF could ill afford, but the fact that one of those regiments hailed from the Royal Divisions made the prospect catastrophic. The Royal Divisions' reputation for absolute loyalty to the First Lord was a key component in the Star League's ability to keep the ambitious House Lords of its member states in line, as any attempt to usurp the Cameron dynasty must surely see their own forces crushed by these better-trained, better-equipped, and most importantly incorruptible elite. Were the House Lords allowed to doubt that for even a moment, their subsequent machinations could bring the League to its knees, and so to avoid such disaster, high command suppressed any reports of the missing regiments. The units were instead listed as "destroyed in action", and the SLDF quietly buried the whole incident without the formality (or visibility) of an official inquiry. In the rush to silence the affair, the obvious connection between the missing units and the events of Empty Sunday was missed: All three regiments were made up of recruits from the former African Union.

Into the Great Dark[]

For their part, the mix of civilian exiles and military deserters had no illusions as to whether the Reunification Wars could end in anything other than victory for the League, or what would happen if the SLDF Explorer Corps ever stumbled over them in search of future expansion if and when the great hungry beast realized even the rich conquests of the Periphery would not be enough to sate it. Thus they had prepared well for a long journey, far into the unknown, in hopes of finding a hospitable home beyond even the League's long reach, a chance to rebuild a culture free from oppression and exploitation.

Unfortunately, charting new hyperspace paths is a not a task to be safely rushed, particularly when the lives of hundreds of thousands rely on the safety of those routes. Two months after leaving the worlds that would one day play host to Johann O'Reilly's strange homage to an extinct ancient Terran empire in their wake, a general unease began to set in among the diaspora. had proven to be little more than marginal, and the odds of any such world sustaining the exile's current numbers, much less allow them to grow, were much less than favorable. Though doubts were growing, the caravan soldiered on, hopeful that the next jump would bring better prospects. Unfortunately this proved not to be the case, and four jumps later, the exiles hit what was, to all appearances, a dead end: a shimmering emerald wall of cosmic dust as far as their telescopes and sensors could see, but neither were able to penetrate. Thus were the exiles the first humans to lay eyes on the wonder that was the Emerald Veil Nebula, but to them, it was less an occasion to be celebrated, and more the end of their quest for a new homeland in failure.

The fleets' leadership held a holo conference from their respective vessels, and after a few days' debate, the decision was made to put three options to a popular vote: Turn back and settle the last of the fertile worlds they had left far behind (a system that would one day be known as Logan Prime), try their luck skimming the nebula's edge heading Coreward, or do the same on a Rimward heading. None of these options were particularly attractive, as though they had prepared well, supplies were beginning to thin, and even the surety of backtracking would run the risk of depletion if there were any delays.To this day, however, it is not known what the result of that poll would be, as midway through the tally, fate intervened.

Beyond the Veil[]

A JumpShip navigator named Leta Okoye would later attest that it was a sleepless rest cycle worrying about the outcome of the vote that found her seated on the quiet bridge of the former SLDF JumpShip Nelson Mandela, seeking distraction in the swirling patterns of the Emerald Veil. As her eyes traced along a tendril of particularly vibrant jade dust cloud, a glimmer of a different color caught her eye, but an instant later, it was gone. At first, she dismissed it as an optical illusion, but something about it nagged at her, until she finally decided to check the sensor log to verify whether she had seen anything at all. As luck (or, according to Okoye, divine providence) would have it, the sensor had in fact captured the same anomaly. However, the interpretation algorithm had failed to identify the cause for the glimmer of gold in the sea of green, and had Okoye not been there and decided to check, it would have been missed entirely.

As it was, Okoye reran the log multiple times before allowing herself to believe what she had seen: there, just beyond a nebula that spanned hundreds of light-years wide in every direction, but apparently only a dozen or so deep, Okoye had glimpsed the glow of not just a main-sequence yellow star, but a sun. In the bare seconds in which a break in the nebula's clouds allowed it to be glimpsed, the sensors had gathered enough data, once Okoye ran it through several filters to screen out the interference from the dust cloud, to identify at least one gas giant and two rocky planets in orbit around the star, at least one of which rested at the inner edge of the stars' habitable zone. Not only that, but the sensors had managed to record the star for long enough to calculate its exact distance, as well as its velocity and direction; enough data, in fact, to plot a jump to the other side of the Veil.

Okoye could barely contain herself as she informed the watch officer, who in turn awoke the JumpShip's captain, who immediately convened another conference. It only took a few minute's review for the decision to be made: The Nelson Mandela would attempt the jump, then transmit her findings on the other side via her portable Hyer-Pulse Generator to the Matumaini, the only other JumpShip in the fleet with Hyper-Pulse capability. Okoye calculated the jump herself, and moments later the crew of the Mandela found themselves staring out into a closely-packed cluster of main-sequence stars, with dozens of them registering as potential suns. More than that, a quick scan of the system in which they had just arrived confirmed that not only was there a rocky planet in the habitable zone, but spectrometer readings indicated an atmosphere containing nitrogen, oxygen, carbon dioxide, and, most importantly, water vapor. Tears in their eyes, the crew signaled the Matumaini, and soon after shared in the rejoicing of their fellows as the entire fleet pierced the veil and arrived in their new home.



Society & Culture[]