Sunday, May 08, 2011

Chaos repel Parthenope Invasion but Ares falls

At the beginning of 05.011M42 the flagging Ares campaign was finally brought to a conclusion by the sudden arrival of a company of Lamenters marines, more than eager to prove their loyalty to the Imperial cause. The marines fell upon the Covenant of Damnation forces holding up in the ruins of Sindon station, deploying their elite footsoldiers and slaughtering the heretics who still fought in the name of chaos on the planet. Clad in shining gold armour and utilising only their infantry, the Lamenters were the image of avenging angels, an image not lost on those who understood the chapter's need to prove themselves.

With Ares secured General Veers put into action his long awaited invasion of Parthenope. The last major world still held by chaos in the Vastrid reach of the Perseus Deeps, its fall would secure the Vastrid subsector and make any chaos incursions into the Valitane sector almost impossible. It would also shore up the supply line to Corticant and Bastien and allow Veers' much anticipated second phase, the assault on Mordecai and Calliden.

It may have been long awaited, but almost as soon as the operation was underway it became clear that operation "Thunderfist" had been badly planned. Landing in the Crad mountains three regiments of Librian Guard secured a landing base at Cradossi before moving down into the plains of Herescia, intending to take Dalisac and cutting the chaos resistance in two. Veers tasked General Ritchie to perform the first assault, and the Librian general sent his regiments off in three directions, intending to encircle Dalisac and crush its defenders on three fronts.

Unfortunately for Ritchie Imperial intelligence hadn't noticed that while the battle for Ares raged, Lorek had deployed a significant force of Anticross and Shadow Suns marines on Parthenope, and now Ritchie's Librian guard found their objective swarming with traitor marines. Worse still the three pronged attack went badly wrong. The three regiments arrived at different times with the mechanised and armoured divisions arriving well in advance of the infantry. Forewarned the Anticross forces simply had to deal with each attack in turn, and this they did with aplomb. Only three days after the initial landing the Librians were calling for assistance.

The Dark Angels 6th company responded to the call and made landfall near Centosar, intending to cut the chaos supply lines and buy much needed time for the Imperial forces fighting for their lives at Dalisac. Almost as soon as they had landed however, the Shadow Suns came racing out to meet them and attacked with such ferocity that the mighty astartes warriors were sent reeling. By 0805.011M42, less than a week after the initial invasion, the Librians and Dark Angels were both in need of extraction, and Jellicoe's battlegroup made a hasty rendezvous with the task force on Parthenope, rescuing the battered remnants of the Imperial Guard and allowing the Dark Angels to extricate themselves.

Veers and the crusade council had seriously underestimated the strength of resistance on Parthenope. Now with the threat of civil war still hanging over him, the lord General made plans for a second invasion which would be much bigger and better planned.

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