Earlier than anticipated, in the dead of night, a small force of Tau began a reconnaisance against the Librian positions. In the darkness a number of Armoured units were taken out immediately, and the Tau began to push inland across the half completed tench lines and fortifications. Concerned this was a new offensive Cunningham now made a fateful decision, throwing in his Librian reserves against the breakthrough, leaving his right flank, manned by the Porphyrians, dangerously exposed.
A day later, just as Cunningham realised that Elan Ro's assault was a probing feint, Shadowstrike's main force landed directly infront of the hastily erected Porphyrian defences. After a brief stand off Shadowstrike's forces broke the line and rolled over the remaining Porphyrians like a speed bump.Three days later the grand Tau tactic of manouevre and encirclement had been employed to the full and Cunningham's Librians were forced to retreat to the natural barrier of the border heights mountains. Meanwhile the Porphyrians and Tarsis PDF were forst ever westwards, forming a new defense line just to the east of Maybourne. In just a few days all the hard work of the previous weeks had been undone. General Du Prez was left asking some serious questions, and his high commander asking some even more serious ones of him.