BattleTech Fanon Wiki

The Bull and the Genie[]

Chapter 33 - Book II - The Ninety-five Theses[]

<<Previous Chapter - Return to Story Index - Next Chapter>>

Interlude: A View from the Future[]

How do empires fall?

The answer is, 'they forget to be afraid.' The first emperor, king, or bossman clawed his way up, be it politically or militarily. But he knows how many times he could have fallen.

His son must firm up the conquests his father made.

And so on.

But eventually, the Empire stands firm, and the rulers no longer have any… challenges. The people they cannot convince, they can force. Their neighbors are subjugated, and the borders are firm.

Then, maybe in a short period of time, maybe not for many years, they start to see the Empire as a… fact of life. Not something created only through the desperate effort of their forefathers.

No, now it is a fact of life. Small reverses, here and there, those are unimportant, because the Empire endures.

They do not remember that those "small reverses" would have their forefathers moving heaven and earth to shore up the cracks in their creation—but unlike their forefathers, they do not remember a time when such cracks could be dangerous.

The process extends all up and down the Empire. The border guards no longer fear. The men in charge of ferreting out corruption become corrupt—and even the loyal, the true believes, focus their energies on the direction the Empire will take once they have achieved their goals.

And not, whether or not their goals will bring the Empire down.

By the 3030s, Comstar had existed as a de-facto empire for over two centuries. Early challenges had faced it, but now, with control over the economy, over communications, only a madman would defy them. Even the Helm atrocity while a blow (and to be fair, many comstar members, not all of them low ranking were horrified by it), was not a threat.

And when Edward gave humanspace his history changing present, the conservatives and the ambitious, headed up by Waterly were furious—but not afraid, not yet. They did not truly understand the nature of the threat, or that their own actions would pose a vastly greater danger to the Order than simply accepting the new status quo. And in this analysis, Waterly's attempt to kidnap Precentor Taurus, to extract all the information about his faction and then either kill or remove him, made sense. He was the real threat in her mind, because he was a challenger for the position of Primus. She did not, truly, understand, just how uncertain the ground under Comstar Was.

For his part, Precentor Taurus did. He'd come up from the boondocks, and through ROM and was possessed of a certain hard-headed realism born of growing up in the Federated Suns Skid Row. His decision to come clean, to inform first Protector Edward, and then a number of other leaders of a number of secrets, any one of which would have shaken the Inner Sphere, let alone all of them, has been cast as a bitter betrayal of Comstar, an attempt to keep Myndo Waterly from enjoying her gains.

That is far from the truth. The fact was very simple, that sooner or later, Myndo would trigger an avalanche that would sweep Comstar away, and the only way to save the Order that had raised Will, was to trigger the avalanche early, while there was some hope of directing its course. The survival of Comstar would come down to a battle between the Woman who believed the Order would always stand triumphant—and the man terrified that the Order was on the verge of destruction.

From: Ca-Ca-Claudius: Comstar and the Accidental Primus

Wynn's Roost Academic Press, 3120.

<<Previous Chapter - Return to Story Index - Next Chapter>>