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Lest we drown in the darkness (Chapter Cover Art)

Chapter 11

Lest we drown in the darkness...

by Cannonshop

November, 2769 - Eagle's Nest, Rim Worlds Republic

The butcher's bill was telling. Hitting three fortresses and 72 hours. House Amaris had invested in defenses with a single contractor.

There's something of a problem, when you let a contract and then don't allow much freedom for the architects.

Three fortresses, 72 hours, and 15,000 men.  That was the cost of having to use meat, instead of metal.

Four thousand were dead, the rest were wounded too badly or were too traumatized. To be sent out again, but they could be sent home. With the best of them, they could be used to help train up replacement companies.

"We knew it was going to be a long war, Sir."  Tranh said, going over the list. Hardly looking up at Brigadier General Charles Miller of the 83rd"To that end, we had replacement units in training before we jumped out. The One-Seven-One will be at full strength in two weeks time.  Therefore, I decline your kind offer to roll my men into your Terran Hegemony command. Among other problems, even your natives from Southeast Asia speak a dialect that forgive my saying so, sounds like half-remembered gibberish and baby-talk to my people. You don't have enough translation specialists to make the integration work."

"That's going to make civil affairs operations dicey, Colonel. I can't use your infantry for the ongoing mission here."

"Sir, we're not here to do civil affairs.  When my replacements arrive, we're moving to the next target, Sir." Tranh stated, "We're only here to kill rimjobs, that's it.  We're not here to nation-build, we're here to kill the ****** Rim-Worlds-Republic and nothing else.  You want to make nice with them, 'buffer the change of regime' and all that good stuff? you don't want us.  We aren't HERE to add territory, we're here to deny Stephan Amaris resources, we're not fighting to restore the Star League and could care less if you lot ever find a Cameron Heir, because my people hate, General, sir. This is revenge, and I'm barely keeping a lid on it-there are presently over six hundred thousand volunteers on Kowloon being screened and undergoing basic training. That's not including the ones who are turning eighteen tomorrow, or the next day." he put the noteputer aside and looked up from his hospital bed, "Do you understand why, General?"

"Uhm, no, not really...why?" the General asked

"Because for two hundred years the rimjobs tried to cull us. They took kids from their families to sold them like appliances. Rimjobs sent full-on military forces to burn homes, businesses, churches on any rumor of resistance, they beat children for speaking their native tongue, broke apart families on trumped up charges, taxed, and brutalized and raped my people for GENERATIONS."  He sipped water from a straw and adjusted his wounded legs, "So we're here, but we're here because the SLDF has promised to guarantee our independence.  This is more or less fighting for a cause, but that cause isn't leaving the Rim Worlds to recover and try again."

He picked up his documents, and began working in the presence of the 83rd's commander.  "SO, General, we're fighting our war for independence, and it happens to coincide with your war for the honor of the Cameron Dynasty." He looked up, "But that doesn't make my people yours to reassign. The One-Seven-One will continue as it's own command. We have our own pipeline for replacements and basic support, and an agreement for supplementary support on an as-available and as-needed basis through the SLDF's logistics a separate entity. Integrating MY logistics into YOURS would be a mistake almost as disastrous as trying to get Viet or Hebraic speakers to integrate with your Earthers."

"Two weeks and you're gone then?" Miller asked.

"Two weeks and we're out of your Area-of-Operations. We will be out of your hair, and on to the next target." Ngo confirmed.

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