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[MechWarrior 5]: After the Republic

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Luke Lavin:
With the Clans rapmpaging across a relatively defenseless Inner Sphere several planets fell quickly while more important systems put up half hearted defenses.  Only the ComGuard camp in the Rasalhagu Republic and the Combine were able to repel serious intrusion, but still took losses.

West Port Coventry,
Lyran Commonwealth,
January 13th, 3116
Lasers strobed, burnning sheets of armor that melted off in goubles of molten metal.  Kran Bell wrestled the controls of the his 95 ton MadCat Mk II, struggling to keep balance as a half ton of armor streamed to the ground in rivers.  The Jade Falcon Supernova that hounded him was his equal, it weigh a good ninety tons surrending five tons to him, but it mounted a trio of extended range large lasers in each massisve arm pod.  It had harried him back into the industrial sector.

Kran's comapny was acting rear-guard as the Seventh Lyran Rangers withdrew from Conventry. Two other comapnies stretched to the left and right flanks. Colonel Benjamin had developed an okay stratagey to defend the rear-guard action. But okay didn't work against Clans, especially the Jade Falcons.  Kran donated both his guarss rifles to the Supernova, one silvery ball dented more armor on it's left leg, the other sailed high and skipped off a building.  

"Hold steady Comapny B." Kran ordered, his people ceased their rear motion and poured fire into the Clan machines. A Gyrfalcon went donw riddled with holes, but the stop came at a price an older Masakari but no less deadly drove four ERPPCs into a Jupiter, the argent blasts cored through the armor and scathed the reactor.  Golden fire bloomed out of rents in the armor, it exploded with shocking force before the pilot could eject.

"By the Archon! The Colonel is down." A voice escaped.

Then it happened first one then two, then an entire lance turned and ran. The Falcons poured in through the ranks, Kran's people now were the only ones holding the center. "The Falcons have turned the flanks!"  Kran gritted his teeth and pulled down on all his triggers, releasing his full arnsenal.  The gauss slugs hammered the chest of the Supernova pulverising armor, shards of armor rained onto the streets.  His score of LRMs peppered the shoulder arms but found not wounds.  His array of four extended range medium lasers cored the gaping rents in the center torse caused by the duet of gauss rifles.  A scream of shreiking metal filled Kran's ears a telling sign of gyro failure.  Splinters of metal spewed from the holes, and the Supernova slewwed drunkinly before falling down into the building on the left.  

The minor victory though wasn't even close to enough, a full Trinary of clanners was in among his company.  Clare, Tae, Sam, and Duncan were all down, Anthony was down with a crippled leg actuator.  That left Kran with an ad-hoc lance, there would be no making it to the Dropships.  

"Any Rangers switch to battallion frequency," there was a quick scratch as Kran switched channels.  "Alright there's no way we can hold West Port, but theres an under ground land car high way, on 12th South and Arcner Way.  It has a 15 meter clearance for freight.  Anyone who can home in on my IFF and head for the tunnel."  Kran launched another flight of LRMs at a Couger then lit off on his jump jets crossing two blocks onto the main threw-a-fair.  It was a mess of armor where the company's Armor had entrenched against the Falcons, burnt out husks of tanks laid every where. Only three mech skeletons laid on the street.  

Kran pumped his four lasers into an Uller that scouted ahead.  The knives of energy cut into the thin rear armor and softened up the rear armor for the gauss slug Kran donated to it as well.  The slug punched through the molten armor and burst out the cockpit in the front.  Kran the cut down the entrance ramp and stopped twenty feet into the tunnel waiting for the others.

Luke Lavin:
Kran waited the better part of twenty minutes, a long time during a fire fight, but he could still hear the roar of weapons fire, the battle still raged somewhere.  Kran turned the MadCat Mk II down the tunnel moving at thirty kilometers an hour, he flipped on a set of flood lights mounted around the cockpit.  He moved down the tunnel and decided to risk following a branch that lead to underground extensions of the spaceport.

The tunnel proceeded into the dark for forty meters before curving left revealing the low but flat wide lower platform for smaller class dropships.  A Lepoard-class Dropship was being loaded right now.  But there was no room for his mech, Kran regreted becoming dispossed but the choice between becoming a Falcon bondsman or running the orbital gaunlet. He decided against it, without fighter cover Clan Omnifighters would shoot the ship down as soon as it lit off.  Kran left the spaceport and returned to the main tunnel.  His thermal readings were picking up a mech.  A Falcon green mech turned the corner into the tunnel from the road above.  A Shrike
a Falcon assault mech that had powerful weapon layout and good manuverablility.  Manuvering was impossible down here, they were fairly matched.  

The Shrike was bringing it's weapons to bear as Kran fired, emerald screwers tagged the Falcon mech all over, one slashed a cut across it's shoulder, two laser into the claw turning one talon into a pooling glob of molten metal.  The last emerald knife lasered into the Shrike's lower lag just below the knee actuator.  

The Shrike responded with a dozen SRM's the high power warheads peppered Kran all over chipping away armor on his arms and left torso but not exploiting any of the rents in his right side.  Kran responded with both gauss rifles, the was a blue discharge of the energy release from the capacitors filling the coils with power, and two silvery streaks hit the Shrike one dug a furrow along the left shoulder while the other shattered armor off the already damaged lower leg.  The Falcon pilot almost fell but stepped back with his other leg and kept balance he responded with both UAC-10s that dug a double furrow of havok from his right hip over the right arm savaging the armor. The completeing blowing away the missle rack on his right shoulder.  Amas fired his right gauss rifle and knifed back with two lasers, that played across the Shrike's chest the gauss rifle flashed past it's cockpit but didn't do anything more than make the pilot flinch.  

The ERPPC shots that would have savaged his Madcat II's centerline plowed a molten furrow in the ferrocrete floor sheered away the right arm.  Kran wrestled the machine at the massive unbalance of losing his right arm.  More than twenty tons of equipement including his right gauss rifle.  

He replied in kind with an alpha strike, the LRM's didn't have enough range between the two to arm and did little more than throw off the Jade Falcon mechwarrior's aim.  His left gauss slug pulverized armor along the Shrike's centerline, and his four lasers melted more armor on the damaged leg.  

Heat soured in Kran's cockpit, the Mk II model of the Madcat was very heat effective but repeated use of ER lasers and the LRM's to boot through the temperature dangerously into the yellow zone.  Kran struggled against the stilifing heat until his cooling vest recieved a fresh burst of coolant that regained control of his core temperature.  Breathing returned and Kran braced himself against the counter attack.  The Shrike, not to be out done let loose with an all out attack also.  The double stream of depleted uranium tiped eight milimeter slugs puned into his right leg, one ERPPC slagged his other missle rack while the other one took off his right leg at the reversed knee cap.  The SRM's peppered the mech allover, three knocking against the head and bursting the ferroglass shield.  A stray piece of metal hit his neurohelmet and knocked his unconscious.

Luke Lavin:
The Triad, Tharkad City
Tharkad, Lyran Commonwealth
January 15th 3116

Deep in the the capital building, the Triad, Archon Frederick Steiner Davion, Hauptman of Armies Deardre Steiner and various officers of military intelligance stood around a vast holoprjected map of the Inner Sphere.  Realms Sphereward of Terra were blocked out in solid colors, Federated Sunds, Capellan Confederation, and the nation states of the former League.  While systems Coreward of Terra were each represented by points of light.  The Commonwealth worlds twinkled Lyran blue, Republic of the Sphere words glowed gold, Comguard words in the old Rasahuegal Republic were illuminated in gray, while COmbine worlds were represented in dark red.  Jade Falcon worlds cracked acid green, and Clan Wolf worlds flashed silver.  Fighting was indicated by red sparks for minor fighting, while worlds that flashed red indicated heeavy fighting and worlds with a green or silver mist around them represented worlds captured by the Falcons or the Wolves.

Federick face was grim in the light cast off by the map, a snake of green mist infected his realm from Coventry back to the Faclon Occupation Zone, while the Wolves already had a nice sized realmed carved out of what used to be ARc Royal and the Arc Royal Defense Cordon.  Their roots of invasion snaked along his and ComGaurd worlds.  The situation was bad, the Falcon zone of influence that controlled most of prefecture XI and the precture capital of Skye in the Republic of the Sphere(RS) reached out to connect with the spear of Falcon advancement, if they connected they would effectively carve out what little remained of the Isle of Skye sill under Lyran control and were dangerously close to the industry world of Hesphrus II.

"Gentlemen, and Ladies you see the problem that we face now I need suggestions.  The Republic of the Sphere is too disarmed to offer assistance and the snapping between the Falcon and the Wolves hasn't reached the point where we can contend to let them fight it out, this is their drive to Terra. We have limited resources.  Only seven regiments of mechs in our entire realm, godd**n Delvin Sointe and his disarmment.  We do have large infantry brigrades but they are raw green grass against thte Falcon onslaught, we have fifeteen regiments of armor.  More Mechs and weapons are being brough to us from trade partners in the Nation States (Old League Realm) but nothing will be here quick enough to stop the Falcons.  I need strategies yesterday."

Luke Lavin:
Deardre Steiner listened quietly to the Archon's situation assement, she paused for a second but none of the more junior officers volunteered any information.  She burshed a lock of burnette hair out of her liquid choclate eyes.  Deardre rose out of her seat, only standing five feet, and four inches she surrenedered alot of height to her juniors but she had a compact frame.  She was the fencing Champion on Tharkad back in her academy days.  "This incursion is a drive to Terrra, unfortunately with the logistics we currently have there is simply no way to save the Isle of Skye, and then afterward repel Wolf incursion.  We have a counter strategy.  Archon with all do respect Terra is not our concern I can see how you would like to help save it but it is the Republic's problem, my plan is based on the oringinal plan that stopped the Falcon incursion sixty years ago during the FedCom Civil War.  Famous Major General Archer Christofi stopped the Jade Falcon with two operations, they were called Operation Bull Dog which buffered the Jade Falcon advance and Operation Audacity which went behind the lines and hit the Falcon Gaurds on Twycross.  Now Operation Bulldog might've worked for us if we did not have the Falcon desant attacking from the Republic also.  They've been tired down by Jasek Kelswa and his Stormhammers with Tara Campbell and her Northwind Highlanders.  Now the counter thrust comes here at Coventry.  The Jade Falcons cannot have Coventry, we are going to drop the Fourth Tharkad Guards, the Eight Melissa Strikers, and Snord's Irregualers onto Covnetry.  From there they will strike a path across the Falcon drive and break the point of the Falcon spear.  The Third, Fifth, Seventh, Eighth, and Tenth Lyran Guards will hit the Falcon front.  The Hespherus Legions will blunt the Jade Falcon Desant.  We have three new Avalon-class heavy cruisers rolled out for counter attack.  The force that hits Coventry will be lead by Marshal Christofer Burnt, you will have the Driscol, and the Adam Steiner.  Marshal Sharron Veeve will have the Morning Star." She nodded to both the commanders, and the Archon."

"Very well you heard the Hauptman General get moving."  Frederick dismissed them with a wave.

A salvo of Arrow IV artillery rockets screamed past, detonating nearly 100 meters behind Hauptman Langustine's command mech. The concussion from the blast rocked his mech, despite its impressive 90 ton mass. The rest of the command lance scattered to avoid the incoming artillery, but a quartet of assault mechs move slowly even under the best circumstances. In an erie repeat of the Clan Invasion so many years ago, Lyrans and the Falcons were clashing again along the old border.

Who knew, he might end up fighting the clanners on Twycross just like his grandfather had done back in those violent days. Another heavy whump of artillery pressed him into his command chair, the pressure mounted against his ear drums, and his eyes, but it didnt last long. The Cyclops, a venerable machine compared to the new toys the clanners were tossing out, rode the shock wave like an old pro. One of the techs had joked that this iron bucket had actually fought back in the third Succession war, long before even his grandfather had been born. He had laughed back, two succession wars, the Clan invasion, and the FedCom civil war hadnt put her out of commision yet, so he had nothing to worry about.

**We must be getting close** his radio hissed, his second in command said. His machine, a massively built Battlemaster lumbered ahead of his own machine. **Their fire is getting erratic, these second line clanners dont see much action**

As if answering their speculation, a blast from a laser left an actinic afterimage in his eyes as it flashed across his mech, scarring through the densest armor. The beam subsided, but his readouts registered the hit as marginal at best. He toggled up the targeting computer, and within a second, the reticle for the gauss rifle illuminated on the HUD. The Cyclops jolted as the massive weapon discharged, an flare of incandescent plasma looping from the end of the barrel as the accelerator magnets bled off excess charge.

Cracks of thunder were muffled by the insulation of the cockpit, but the brilliant flashed of plasma discharge from particle cannons was unmistakable. Both of the fire support mechs, the Battlemaster and the refit antique Zeus were laying down withering barrages of fire. Return fire was light, and a distant whomp betrayed the sudden end of one of the clanner mechs. His system rotated to the next closest target, a Vulture omnimech, one of the monsters that had so terrified the Lyrans when it had first appeared, and seemed unstoppable

The gauss round caught it in the rotator ring, blasting the relatively thin armor plating, and severely damaging the assembly. In all likelyhood his upper torso would be locked in its current facing. The last mech in his lance, a sweet Marauder II advanced at a near run, laying down cowboy gunfire with its twin particle cannons. The Vulture collapsed under the barrage, its entire left side self destructing as the Marauders cannons ripped into an ammunition bin.

Within a few moments, the paltry defending star of second line clan mechs was out of commision, and the artillery batteries were permanently silenced.

**Bravo Command to HQ, enemy fire base Zulu One has been eliminated,** Peter punched in the direct link back to the Planetary Offensive Command

**Scratch five clanner mechs, zero losses...Hold or advance HQ, please advise**


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