D-DAY MINUS 305
"I understand your concerns perfectly," Mya replied smoothly, her brow furrowed in concentration as she studied the readouts. "The presence of the shipyard makes us all deeply uncomfortable, and its proximity to your civilian populations has kept us from acting more rapidly."
"We've received rumors of what they did after the Maw collapsed," the bland, middle-aged human replied. "We can't risk that happening to our people."
"Nor would we risk them," Mya agreed. "With the information you've gathered…this will make it much easier for us to ensure that they cannot retaliate."
"When will that be? We want to be ready."
Mya cocked her head in consideration before shrugging. "I don't know. That will be up to the Admiralty and Advisory Boards to decide. But it will be soon- have your people prepared and on standby."
The two rose, shook hands, and departed.
D-DAY MINUS 178
ORD PROVIDENCE CHARITY GALA
"Ma'am, you have a call coming in, priority one." Her bodyguard spoke quickly in her ear and Mya nodded, excusing herself from the Dug, who had been hanging onto her every word.
"Jesel here," she said, speaking into the comlink. There was a crackle of distortion as the signal was thrice encrypted and beamed out to the ship in orbit, which had carried her to the world. One of the Rescue Service corvettes- fast, maneuverable, and while not comfortable, wasn't ostentatious either.
"We had a delivery from Coruscant up here with a proposal regarding some of the trade deals we've established with their companies?"
Code. And the one she had been waiting on. "Very good. Start the process moving and take it to the advisory boards for consideration and the council's proposals. Let Xagobah know that the joint training mission is ready."
D-DAY MINUS 90
"All ship refits, and rearmaments are completed," the technician said, looking up from the datapad to address the assembled Council and Advisory Boards. "Supplies have been transported via a dispersed network of civilian freight companies and independent ships across a wide network of systems- Seswenna's defenses will be ready."
"Very good," Mya replied, with dark bags under her eyes and a pinched look. "And the fleets?"
"The initial task force will begin, in a good but not perfect, covert movement towards O'reen so that people paying attention will see military assets-presumably to hit the Final Dawn shipyards and base. Meanwhile, most of our fleets will consolidate around the southern and western border worlds with the Sith- but they will all be either on or adjacent to the Hydian Way."
"We've reached out to privateers, and our contracted forces will all be on standby, again hints indicating O'reen and the Sith Order as primary targets, particularly Pitann and Demonsgate. This information will also spread to loose-lipped and incautious assets, particularly among the underworld and infochants." Mya knew that that would be the work of ORION and their Huntsmen. "Full orders will be dispatched only to the captains and heads of these forces, allowing them to make whatever arrangements they see fit- with the timing for when they will move in coordination with our forces."
That seemed very complicated to Mya, but so was what they were attempting to do. Attack and destroy a shipyard in orbit over a neutral world, which consistently had a defense fleet of nearly thirty capital ships and six orbiting defense platforms. She glanced around at the faces around her- representatives from all across the Outer Rim, many far more experienced in warfare than she was.
But the time had come. The League had given Sularen a fair offer, and he had rejected it. The League was not fool enough to react immediately. Patience won wars more often than swiftness. And that was something the League was good at. The galaxy viewed them as disorganized and idealistic, hardly worth being called a galactic power. But that was intentional. The League had a backbone in trade and industry-- they were pragmatists and realists, looking at the long run. And they were ready to show the galaxy that they were not to be waved aside.
"All ships await orders for reversion," the command echoed through the encrypted comms of the assembled fleet. "Picket squadrons one through three, revert in T minus three. All remaining picket squadrons, revert in T minus ten. Contact from our Q fleet?"
"As anticipated, significant Final Dawn reinforcements- further detail on reinforcements gathered from ships in-system waiting in a small probe droid just past our reversion point. Q assets in place and awaiting the admiral's signal."
Three picket squadrons- primarily Rescue Service corvettes and patrol craft to scout the system and establish hostile locations, followed by the rest of the full Civil Defense squadrons, built around cruisers, with interdiction support, to move in roving layered patrols. The Final Dawn had indicated HIMS capability in their ships of the line before, so the layers of interdiction around the egress points should keep their reinforcements tied up while the main battle fleet engaged the stations.
Then fighters and gunships hit the shipyards hard and fast, nearly right out of lightspeed, deploying troops into the shipyards themselves, both to prevent reinforcements from launching and to set the power conduits to blow.
Then there was the fleet. A battlecruiser with support was nothing to take lightly, no matter how rapidly the first strike hit, especially not when there were four station fortresses. But they had no maneuverability of their own- and if there was something the League knew how to do, it was move heavy objects in space. The Remittances would take the brunt of the defense stations, using heavy tractor beams to pull them out of position while hammering them with heavy weaponry.
Meanwhile, the rest of the fleet would deal with the defense ships- Civil Defense battlegroups, privateers, military contractors, and volunteers with a grudge against the Maw. Commodore-General Quahatil Sacul would have ultimate authority over all combat forces in operation.
A shipyard was too large and well-supplied to destroy without a protracted siege unless the interior could be taken and systems wrecked from the inside. But that was dangerous work- combining all the hazards of urban warfare and ship boarding actions.
But there were advantages to being a space-based society, and plenty of inhabitants of the League had a personal grudge against the Maw's minions- including special forces teams from the Chiss Semi-Autonomous Dominion-- and many more who knew their ways around mining and salvage equipment. Fighter pilots had been undergoing grueling training for months in preparation of boarding the station and delivering the troops and supplies necessary to destroy the station.
Suarbi's cometeer brigade had been mustered and trained for this action- fitted out with heavy mining and salvage equipment. With the Lux Astra Trade Corporation, that had been an economic dispute and the League had sieged and captured their battleships to convey a message. Rangers, privateers, and contractors would supplement the assault force.
There was a new message: imperialist forces would not be tolerated in the Outer Rim. The station would be destroyed, and any ships in it either detonated or cut up for scrap.
Breach the outer defense. Secure a beachhead. Expand the perimeter. Wreck the station- from the power conduits if possible, any other way if not. All defense personnel were issued and trained in the multirole armored vacsuits to prepare for this operation.
The Brotherhood of the Maw was known for their indiscriminate ruthlessness. The Final Dawn was no exception. Their proximity to a neutral world full of civilians had been the only thing keeping the League from launching an immediate strike against the shipyards.
The League would not compromise or bend on their promise to the Final Dawn: leave or be destroyed. But more importantly, they would not risk the massacres and deaths of neutral civilians in pursuit of that threat.
It had taken many months, and lots of work, but the League had a solution in place: they’d smuggled in an entire defense system for all population centers within striking distance of the shipyard’s standard orbit: shield generators, anti-air weapons, and point-defense systems.
The problem was that it would tip off the forces in orbit if they were set up too soon. Too late, and the Final Dawn could retaliate against the civilian population. Meaning they had to go up, and they had to go up fast once the assault began. Theorists said that logistics won wars and this would put it to the test. Seswenna militia, aided by members of the Underground, Outer Rim Development Corps, and volunteers, would have a small window of time to get the systems up and running. But that still left the non-major population centers.
That would be another volunteer effort from the clandestine forces of the League to offer evacuations to anyone who wished to flee to the defended areas and to harass and destroy any Final Dawn troops that might attempt to make a landing.
The League was making a statement here. They had to prepare for every eventuality and ensure that it was something they could point to as proof of their effectiveness.
- Seswenna Military Shipyards
- Peace in Our Time (Private)
- The Pledge (Private)
- Legacies of Fear (Private)
- The Gala (Faction)
- Flying Inverted (Faction)