Edward's War

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Re: Edward's War

Post by masterarminas » 2013-05-17 11:21am

Independence Weaponry Central Control
Prosperity Point, Quentin
Federated Suns
August 25, 3026

“Marshal, you have to defend the factories! We cannot allow Kurita to take over the production lines!” snapped Duke Oscar Ivanick, the CEO of Independence weaponry. “We have just spent nearly two hundred million C-Bills to restore these facilities—there are nearly fifty BattleMechs currently being assembled!”

“You think I am not aware of that?” snarled Marshal Timothy Ulso, but then the AFFS officer sighed. “Your Grace, I have one BattleMech Regiment, two regiments of tanks, an air cavalry regiment, five regiments of infantry, and an artillery battalion. But those are the Alpha and Gamma Regiments of Wolf’s Dragoons out there—supported by three more Kurita BattleMech Regiments. We can delay Jaime Wolf, but I cannot stop him.”

“How long?” whispered the old man as he sank down into his chair.

“Hours, Your Grace. Wolf and the Snakes are pressing us hard—we are making them pay for every inch of ground, but . . .,” and Ulso shrugged his shoulders.

“I understand,” continued Ivanick. “How soon can you get reinforcements here?”

Ulso sighed again and ran one hand through his thinning hair. “Communications from Marduk indicate that they have also landed there and handed Chisholm a major defeat—which means we’ve got a real problem right here in the Draconis March, Your Grace. Three weeks? Maybe four?”

“What are you going to do?”

“What I have to, Your Grace. I need to preserve the Hussars until reinforcements arrive—which means I need to evacuate the Steel Valley of as many of troops as I can pull out,” the Marshal looked away. “Your local security will be alone . . . unless you order them to come with me.”

The CEO nodded and he shook his head again as he looked down at the map. “Marduk and Quentin—on the same day, with ten regiments. This isn’t a smash-and-grab, like they did back in ’23 is it?”

“No, Sir. I am afraid it is not.”

“In that case, they will want the factories intact—operable, Marshal. My security will stay here and set up a defensive perimeter,” the old man said bleakly. “If the factories are what they want, they might not push too hard into an area where they will damage them.”

“That is a pipe-dream, Your Grace. Wolf will not be bluffed—and he will come in and dig out your defenders if he has to,” Ulso warned.

“But it will buy time, Marshal,” Oscar Ivanik said as he stood, looking in that instant much like the man who had once commanded one of the AFFS’ premier Crucis Lancers Regimental Combat Teams many, many years ago. “Time for your boys to put some distance between them and the invaders—and time for you to get my engineers and techs to safety.” Ulsek hissed in sudden realization of what the old man was intending, and Ivanik nodded. “They can’t run the lines without those personnel, Marshal. Keep them safe,” he ordered as he picked up the phone on his desk. “Operations. Shut down all the lines—everything. The order is Starfall,” he said, naming the exact contingency plan he wanted put into place. “Transfer all production line code to portable storage—and wipe the mainframes. And sound the evacuation alert.”

He sat down as he hung up the phone again. “And you, Marshal,” he continued with a bleak look on his face. “You don’t have time to waste—call for reinforcements before we lose access to the HPG. Tell the First Prince you will have the programs and personnel needed to restart the lines.”

“You won’t survive, Your Grace,” Ulso said quietly.

“Let me worry about that, Marshal. Now go—before it is too late.”

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