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The Other War (Cover)

Chapter 11 - The Other War[]

The Great Refusal

  • Blood Spirit vs Draconis Combine | Khan Schmitt is killed by the 1st Genyosha
  • Fire Mandrill vs Red Lancers of the Capellan Confederation | Red Lancers's Win
  • Hell's Horses vs Free Rasalhague Republic's 3rd Drakøns | 3rd Drakon's Win
  • Ice Hellion vs Nova Cat | Khan Asa Taney and both Nova Cat Khans dead, despite that Nova Cat win
  • Jade Falcon vs ComStar | Falcons Win, defeating the Invader Galaxy
  • Star Adder vs Free Worlds League | The Adders defeat 1st Free Worlds Guards
  • Wolves vs St Ives Compact | Wolves draw with the 1st St Ives Lancers

The Adders would pay high cost of their victory in the Perium Swamp against the 1st Free Worlds Guards, only a third of which escaped.


04/23/3060 Location – Perium Swamp, Strana Mechty

Force Commander Karin Orloff stood in the open cockpit enjoying the salt air while looking out with binoculars toward the Star Adder side of the 3 square kilometer Circle of Equals. Seven mechs in dark blue assembled across the way with unusual Elementals being dropped off by an Anhur transport which quickly departed leaving a trail of turboprop exhaust on the water. Beneath her Battlemaster K3 the ground was spongy and wet and the flanks were covered by an estuary and swamp. It was a perfect place to fight the more mobile Clan mechs and she was profoundly proud of her cunning.

Her XO Captain Rolau in the now clan teched out Avatar called in over the radio, ‘‘I only recognize a few of those mechs Commander. Maybe they are throwing some new stuff at us to screw the bid up. One of them looks like a big Vulture.’‘

‘‘I think that's Star Captain Irons. It's that one or the big one with the missiles. Those Elementals are curious. We have no idea of what they are capable of. I suppose that's fair we are throwing some new stuff at them too.’‘ She dropped down into the cockpit and powered up her machine ensuring the C3 link was established between the Avatars and Catapult. ‘‘Careful team, we don't know how these Clanners fight. They could be smarter than the Jaguars we faced so far.’‘

Catapult LRM Mech (Blender Version)

Catapult Heavy Fire Support 'Mech

‘‘Not many could be dumber Force Commander.’‘ ‘‘Ain't that the truth. Guardsmen ready yourselves.’‘

On the other side Star Captain Seth Irons was well rested in his Sidewinder and armed with the best information on the ground having conducted a recon flight during the night. He opened a radio link to the Hellbringer B and Stormcrow I, ‘‘I know the Khan ordered you to come here in case we get into trouble but you are to not engage unless we call for you. Quiaff?’‘

‘‘Aff, Star Captain. We will walk wide around the pond but remain in the Circle,’‘ The Hellbringer twisted toward the estuary that made up their right flank, ‘‘We will honor your bid but defend ourselves if we must.’‘

On the other side Karin's Battlemaster powered up at the appointed time. She was watching watching the new Elementals named 'Coronas' in the Batchall board the possibly Adder Mad Cat replacement called a 'Sidewinder.' She hadn't fought many clanners but this was the first time she had seen the Elementals use handholds to board their Omnimechs instead of jumping and grabbing on. ‘‘Looks like they don't have jets. Should be a piece of cake to deal with just stay out of range.’‘

The Apollo walked forward, ‘‘It's why we've got these missiles Commander.’‘

The Adders split into three groups; a Loki and Ryoken went to the right flank walking slowly around the estuary and treading the Circle of Equals. One of the Adders the biggest one of them dubbed a 'Blood Asp' in the strode confidently into the marshland. The assault mech creating a wake when it entered small tidal pools and kept its missile racks clear of debris while its legs were hidden below the brackish brown water. The other one dubbed 'Black Python' jumped into a pool creating a cascading wave as the heavy mech crashed into the water. In the rear line the Thor, Sidewinder, and Night Gyr jumped into the swamp with their Coronas hanging on by a heavy battle claw.

‘‘Force Commander who are going for? There's three target groups.’‘ ‘‘Split into Lance sized formations. I want C3 in each group to pour the missiles down on them. We are playing to win don't worry about Zell. They probably won't.’‘ ‘‘Aye sir. Moving to engage.’‘

Phoenix Hawk (Unseen - City Ruins)

Phoenix Hawk 'Medium 'Mech

Captain Rolau's Avatar pushed through the marsh he could see all three adders use their jump jets to bypass the trees. A trick that only the Phoenix Hawk in his lance could match. His machine kept pace with the Orion 'War Drummer.' The War Drummer was a standard 1K active since the late 29th Century only mildly updated with an LBX cannon but piloted by the Baron of Trinidad. Baron Spyros was a decorated War Hero looking for one last bit of excitement before retirement.

A mostly new Hercules was slightly ahead of them the white of its paint taking on a brownish wash as it strode through the calf high water. The Phoenix Hawk was keeping pace with it while searching for the enemy who was no longer jumping over the canopies. They hadn't taken recon assets not expecting their Clan enemy engaging in any subterfuge. ‘‘Do you think they mined the swamp Captain?’‘ ‘‘No. I think they are trying to lure us into close range Baron.’‘ ‘‘That doesn't seem like a good plan on their part. Throwing away all the advantages of their long range weapons.’‘

They continued pushing through the swamp and got into a very densely wooded and deep water glade. The Hercules stepped into it submerged up to its waist in the murky water. It was struck with something from three different locations as the Coronas came out from behind the trees. Fifteen total pulses were fired from their shoulder mounted cannons. Most hit melting away sections of armor and creating steam plumes as the lasers flash boiled the soaked swampland.

The Hercules collapsed into the water under the combined assault that matched an Alpha Strike of the much feared Black Hawk. ‘‘Sir, Kontos is down. I'm going to try and take one of these Points out.’‘

About 200 meters away the Avatar and Orion pushed through the swamp. ‘‘No, wait for us. The others are probably nearby.’‘ Captain Rolau and Lord Spyros moved up to aid their comrades and engage the Star Adder Star Captain.

Karin Orloff almost felt wrong going after the Adder Assault and Heavy mechs with her whole heavy lance. The Catapult and Apollo found their firing positions opening their missile bay doors to reveal the majority of the company's long range missiles. Her C3 links weren't strong with Captain Rolau but he was quite capable of fighting on his own she still had the other Avatar that was presently leading the left flank lance toward the other two Adder Mechwarriors.

Once they were in missile range the two fire support units opened fire each was aiming for a different mech. They were surprised to find their Artemis IV guidance package jammed and both mechs had a pair of AMS guns. Their computer guided flechettes ripped apart the very expensive missiles in mid-air as easily as shooting birds out of the sky. The shattered remains landed like so many pebbles on the water.

‘‘They have ECM and AMS. Since when do clanners use their pod tonnage on defense?’‘ ‘‘Maybe its the standard way these Adders operate or Seth Irons knows our preferences and outfitted his mechs with a hard counter.’‘ Secretly she seethed the C3 network was one of the best counters to clan advantages and as long as they stayed inside its protective bubble her strategy was in jeopardy.

Karin aimed at the Blood Asp and launched a lightning bolt and pair of laser lance toward the assault mech. Her mech warmed and there was faint steam rising from where the water hit the arms. ‘‘Fine we will do it the hard way.’‘ The Tempest fired at the Black Python but missed causing the almond shaped Gauss round to embed itself a tree half a kilometer away. Their opponents didn't miss though, 2 heavy pulse lasers melted armor on the tempest while Karin's Battlemaster had a chunk taken out of the right leg by the Blood Asp's Gauss rifle and a smattering of missile impacts that dented the heavy armor.

Captain Rolau came on the radio, ‘‘Commander! We need help.’‘ A pair of loud explosions rang out over the swamp causing birds to stir and climb to safety as the Night Gyr double tapped the Avatar with its Devastator XX cannon. The Captain's lance was heavily outgunned in the swamp with heavy lasers and PPCs along with dozens of short range missiles. She could see the damage mount on their battlenet when she took a moment to receive an update from the master computer.

‘‘Samara take Malcolms and help Rolau. Leave Dolens and McCloud.’‘ The Avatar and Wolverine on the left flank cut back and headed toward the swamp leaving behind a Warhammer 7M and Hunchback 4N to check the enemy flankers that stalked the perimeter but had yet to engage in fact they showed no eagerness to engage at all and had managed to keep just out of weapons range as if to goad the Inner Sphere forces from their supporting arms.

‘‘I am not going to let some Clanner show me up.’‘ She fired again and landed solid blows on the Blood Asp that caused it to stagger under the weight of the energy shot into it. The standard plate melted away steam gathered where the plates landed but the assault mech fired back as if nothing was amiss. The second round of missiles was even less successful than the first but were using less expensive ammo. To her surprise the Blood Asp launched a volley of smoke missiles that burst behind the lead mechs insulating the commands and forcing the missile mechs to advance into the water or wait for it to disperse.

The Black Python continued hammering on the lighter Tempest that continued to jump toward the enemy accepting the degraded accuracy of its own weapons to bypass the marshland it was forced to operate within. With the second volley she noticed that it was using its leg mounted heat sinks to pump the marsh water into its cooling system and maintain the energy barrage toward her ally. Her own mech was warming up dramatically with the waste heat from her energy weapons. She would be sweating profusely by now if the DCMS hadn't given her one of their COMSTAR made Mechwarrior combat suits.

Back in the swamp, Captain Rolau waited for the next round to engage the Avatar Bulldog and War Drummer were back to back waiting for the Star Adders to return. Their mechs were seriously damaged, the Phoenix Hawk's reactor was flooded and its Mechwarrior was waiting for rescue. The Hercules was stripped to the bones by constant laser fire and its legs had been flooded out. Its Mechwarrior had chosen to power down and not risk catastrophic damage.

They had given the Adders a good licking though they weren't expecting his clan tech large lasers and that had caused damage to Seth Iron's Sidewinder but not enough to down him for good. War Drummer was hit almost everywhere but nothing critical had been injured yet. A few rounds of LBX10 canister shot had done a number on the Corona suits. They packed immense and surprisingly long range firepower but their armor and mobility were not as good as the normal Toad. There were no casualties but the armor had gone deeper in the woods avoiding the old machine which despite its low tech was piloted by an amazing Mechwarrior.

Samara's Avatar became green on his C3 link along with a Wolverine 6M. ‘‘We're almost to your location Captain. Where are the enemy?’‘ ‘‘Unknown, our sensors are being jammed. I think they are playing with us. I'm almost through on most of my torsos and already had to dump a ton of ammo in the swamp.’‘ ‘‘Why are they toying with us?’‘ ‘‘Qe are new here. They want to see how we react.’‘ ‘‘Either that or they are redeploying the Coronas and moving into a position on the Force Commander.’‘ ‘‘Also probable.’‘

The other two mechs broke through the trees to link up with their comrades. Star Captain Seth Irons gave the go signal and jumped his mechs from their locations just out of sight. The Coronas released their grip rolling on the soft ground right at the feet of the enemy. Three Clan Mechs engaged the wounded Guards at close range, the Summoner's two heavy lasers ripping through the Wolverine's (which is called a Groundhog to the clans who dare not speak of the not-named) left side cutting it to the bone but the old machine fired back at the damaged Summoner. The old large laser found its mark and damaged the heat sinks built into the heavy laser disabling it.

Summoner Heavy OmniMech (In combat by Philbobagginzzz)

Summoner Heavy OmniMech

Seth's Sidewinder unloaded everything at the damaged Avatar sinking two bolts of man-made lighting that crackled at close range followed by two dozen short range missiles. Stubby warheads tore into the Hermes 280XL engine cracking the engine shielding and shutting down the mech. The Night Gyr split its fire using the Autocannon against Mechwarrior Samara's Avatar causing shock waves to thump into the Elementals piloting the Coronas on the ground. A dozen streak missiles found weak spots in the old mech and led to its shutdown due to combat damage, Baron Spyros' swan song would not be a death knell.

The League would not go without dropping a few of their own though, Star Captain Iron's Sidewinder suffered critical engine damage from the Avatars' Streak and Medium Range missiles. One of War Drummer's LBX sub-munitions found the autocannon ammo in the Night Gyr. The Elementals only had seconds to take cover from the uncontrolled explosion that blasted a line of trees 20 meters deep behind the mech. The Summoner and Coronas finished off the Avatar D before refocusing on the center line.

Back in the Center the Blood Asp and Black Python walked over the fallen Tempest the rounded crest on its head just visible over the waterline with the rest being face down in the mud. A Guards' Apollo was slumped over as a smoking ruin having taking a concentrated attack from the Adder machines. Smoke missiles exploded ahead of the Adder's measured advance.

Karin Orloff was in retreat as the mechs pushed her back almost to the start position. The Blood Asp had severely damaged her Battlemaster and continued to move despite taking intense damage. Its pilot alternated between smoke and explosives to foul her shots. A Battlemaster may be a fast assault but in the muck her mobility was compromised. There were only so many places she could reach and he often predicted well preparing his position in advance. The Black Python was damaged but it was scattered missile damage besides the lucky hit on the cockpit cowling. Half her company was down in the woods and while they had taken two with them there were others that were edging closer and forcing the command closer toward the deeper sections of the marsh where they could pin the force down against the agreed upon Circle of Equals with no chance of breaking out.

Four mechs might be able to stand against three but not five Clan mechs. She keyed in a broadcast on the open frequency. "Star Captain Irons, I yield The Adder mechs powered down lowering their weapons, Well fought Force Commander Orloff. There is no honor lost on this field today for your unit or its Warriors. We will begin recovery operations at once."


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