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Mech Battle 5 - Miaplusidus

Written by BlackPhoenix

Miaplusidus was a garden world. Vast plains of green, slow rolling hills of mineral rich rock dotted the area. The only downside to the beauty was that it was in the possession of Comstar. They were raping the land to gather the much-needed ores, to finance their aggression through out the galaxy. Modern warfare required minerals for equipment, and valuable ores to be turned into hard currency and bolster up Comstar’s war ravaged economy.

It was defended with only a small garrison of pilots, but its major defense was its location. On the outer rim of the quadrant it was difficult to stage a major attack with out prolonged planning and it would take massive funds to keep a significant force equipped and supplied this far out for any length of time. Comstar kept supplies to a minimum on Miaplusidus for just this reason. There could be no supplies for the enemy to use against the Comstar forces. Comstar knew than sooner or later their little money cow would come under attack. So it was no great surprise when the long-range detectors showed an assault force of Pendragon drop ships on a course for Miaplusidus. It was also no surprise that the detectors were destroyed as soon as they were detected themselves. But this came too late the attack was seen and prepared for.

Days before the Pendragon dropships arrived Comstar was as ready as they were going to be. The supplies were cached away. The mechs were ready, and Comstar command had been notified. Orders were simple. " Hold out as long as possible. Inflict as many causalities as possible, and protect the mining station".

The mining station was completely under ground and shielded from detection. It was impossible to locate without the map location, or a complete search. The commander of the ground forces knew that there would be no reinforcements or help from command headquarters. The war was hotter in other areas. If he could manage to hold out for just a few days, Pendragon would be forced to retreat through the exhaustion of their supplies. Proving again location was their greatest asset. Mechs were stationed at the prime landing locations, and now the only thing to do was wait.

The Pendragon ships landed unopposed, and the stormcrows literally boiled out of the landing ramps even before the ships were completely on the ground. In the low gravity the crows could covered ground quickly. The dropships were back in orbit before they could be damaged. After all it was Pendragons only way off the planet in case of trouble.

The assault force was fully deployed before the first reports came in of contact. The Pen forces had broken into hunter killer teams of 2 stormcrows. This tactic had been proven over the years to work with perfect precision. The Pen pilots double-teamed a group of enemy one at a time and destroyed one before moving on to another. The contacts were all single Comstar stormcrows. Comstar would establish contact with an opening attack, then break and run for cover. But this was expected and planned for by the Pendragon high command. The teams had trained and knew how to counteract this cowardly battle plan. If the enemy was not stopped in the first few minutes of contact he was headed for the horizon at the fastest possible speed and never to be seen again. This tactic was known as the "C* duck and run" by every house and Clan in the know universe. The battles when they did happen were highly one sided. Pen was cutting through the Comstar forces like a scythe through new wheat. The smoking remains of Comstar equipment littered the ground in every direction. Then the battles stopped. The only sign of Comstar was the stormcrows hanging around at the edge of detection range. When forces moved to intercept, they enemy vanished into the very landscape, to emerge later just barely appearing on the sensors. After 4 days of point less frustration just as Comstar planned Pendragon supplies started to run low. First were rations for the pilots. My pilots will survive on half rations. Then the much-needed oil for the stormcrows started to run low, and stormcrows are less understanding and less forgiving. It was decided that the troops must be recalled before the machines of war started to break down and leave the mech stranded far from home with no capabilities of defense. The dropships were called in and the men and equipment loaded and they left planet for a Pendragon base station.

The departing forces were viewed with great celebration. The Comstar commander had managed once again to maintain control of the far distant but much needed facility. The act of frustrating the enemy was an art of war that must be taught to the entire House of Comstar. It was true that Pendragon had managed to destroy 75% of his existing force, while losing only 25% of their attacking force. To many this might be seen as a Comstar loss, BUT! They (Comstar), were still here and Pendragon was leaving dragging their tails behind them.

Feeling rather pleased with himself the commander set about sending out scouting parties to look for any stragglers that may have managed to get themselves left to the mercy of the great Comstar War Machine. Sentries must be set to watch for a Pendragon return. And get a repair crew out to install new long-range detectors. Life can be good.

His name was Rapper, and his rank was cadet. He had been in Comstar for 6 months. And the only part of this wonderful universe he had seen was this backwater planet on the edge of nowhere. He had been sent to this forward out post to watch for anyone wishing to attack. Boy being the low man on the totem pole sucked. But it sure beat repairing walls and digging up buried boxes.

It had been five days of shear boredom. Watching the sky for the boogieman to come in the night. 2 hours till dawn. At dawn the automatic cameras could take over the exciting job of watching the sky and he could get some sleep. A meteor streaked across the star-less sky. The flash of light was a brief distraction, and a welcome relief from boredom. There was another, and another, wow this was getting cool. They didn’t seem to be that far away, like they could be taken from the clouded sky. Being a cadet it took Rapper a minute to realize that there was low clouds at less that 5 thousand feet overhead and that it had been cloudy all night. There was yet another streak in the sky. Finally it started to sink in, if they could be seem they were under the cloud layer, and that meant less than 5 thousand feet up. He grabbed the night vision equipment and stuck it to his eyes. The fire covered the meteors as the streaked ground ward. He dropped his vision to the ground. Stormcrows, and LOTS of them. He dove for the comlink.

"COM CENTER ALERT, COM CENTER ALERT." He yelled into the circuit. "What is it Rapper?" was the bored reply "ENEMY ON THE GROUND, ENEMY ON THE GROUND. THERE ARE HUNDREDS OF THEM, THEY ARE EVERYWHERE SEND HELP SEND HELP." Still over excited and screaming. " There are not hundreds of any enemy in this whole quadrant. I am not falling for your crap tonight Rapper I am tired." Again boredom was most of the answer.

"THIS IS NO JOKE, I COUNT OVER 400 STORMCROWS HEADED THIS WAY, REPEAT OVER 400 STORMCROWS HEADED THIS WAY. SEND HELP AT ONCE. SEN…….." At this Rapper’s transmission stopped. "Please repeat Rapper and stop with the AC fire please it makes it hard to hear you." Replied the communication’s man. After about ten seconds it dawned on him Rapper was on foot in an outpost bunker. He hit the alarm button as the first missiles slammed into the walls of the com-center.

The sounds of explosion woke the commander with a start. He bolted to the window to look out on the carnage. Pendragon stormcrows were everywhere. He had never seen this many mechs in one place before, even when he was in charge repair on homeworld. If Pendragon had this kind of resources Comstar was lost. He turned to get his weapon as a stormcrow came crashing through his roof. It hit the ground running and with AC’s chewing up everything in sight. The pilot of the killer machine never even saw the commander he just opened fire as he entered in his own defense. Gully saw the room was clear and crashed into another part of the structure, paying no attention to the crumbled uniform in the corner by the window.

The battle took only 4 hours from the time the first stormcrow hit the ground running until recall was broadcast and they returned to the rally point. Reddragon lead the attack personally. The forces of Pendragon never gave Comstar a chance. The first attack was to try and draw the forces into combat the overrunning attack did just as it was planned. It led them into a false sense of security then hit them with a force that offered no quarter. The inhabitants of this once plush planet are now in the process of rebuilding. The have ASKED Pendragon to maintain a garrison on planet until they can build a force strong enough to maintain their own defense. Pendragon has agreed. (At no charge or cost to the planet or it’s people.)