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The Armada (Chapter Cover Art)

Chapter 6 - The Armada[]

City of Novy Moscva
Eden Star System, Pentagon Worlds
Clan Space, Deep Periphery
3167 CE

Rochelle didn't have instructions for this.  The bulk of the Warrior Caste had vanished overnight, taking with them the highest rated scientists and technicians, Merchants, and craftsmen.

The top 1% of each Caste, gone now two years without a message back to the homeworlds.  At first, it was for operational security, obviously.  The mission to pave the way for a return to the Inner Sphere, to punish the traitor lords and end the taint.

But not so much as a status report.

It was obvious, of course, that they would take factories-one of the critical failures of Operation:Revival had been the excessively long supply chain...

Then, a Coyote trader arrived with pictures of a supernova.

Pictures, and word of more and suddenly, the Grand Council's agreement to return to the Inner Sphere as conquerors made a hell of a lot more sense.

She had once served as a front-line warrior in her Clan, she knew something was wrong at the announcement. She'd suspected things when they dismantled so many facilities, when they took the Genetic Repository with them.

Alas, she was only a Solahma now, and the Coyote trader's word, and the pictures, put everything together.

We've been abandoned.

She did what she had to do to maintain order.  What could they do? The mothball fleet had been stripped, the hulks left were too broken to repair, and even if they were not, the foundry facility to make new cores had been taken, and there simply weren't enough transport Jumpships left to even attempt to evacuate.

Left behind, the ranking warrior left in Novy Moscva, Star Colonel Richard, was just as used up as she was.  However, he was ready to do things that would stir nothing but panic, as the people learned the truth.

She did what she had to do.

We must face this with dignity.

As she bled out in the ruins of her 'mech, and the Star Colonel strode up to the wreckage, she gripped to that fiercely.  We have been left to die, but we can still do so with our dignity.

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