Monday, December 17, 2012

Tyranteous: Tau probe imperial defences

With their foothold in the system's outer reaches secure the Tau continued to push forward their plans for an invasion of Tyranteous. With the use of air power a critical staple of the Tau method of war the Tyranteous Coalition aimed to secure air supremacy around the site of the proposed beachhead. Having already established a secret air base amidst the frozen arctic tundra the first priority was to eliminate the rival imperial facility in the region before they became alerted to the Tau's presence.

Under cover of darkness a hunter cadre was airlifted by Manta, flying low and using mountain ranges to mask its presence from the advanced sensor facilities at the air base. Dropped into foothills some distance from the air field the cadre then made its way towards the facility ready to attack at dawn.

The Tau's hopes for an unopposed surprise attack were brutally dashed when sirens began sounding and the piercing beams of spotlights suddenly arced out from the fortifications protecting the base. Tracer fire streamed out from entrenched guns and artillery rounds began landing amidst the Tau's forward positions. Unknown to the Tau their cadre had been detected by an observation post as it advanced on their target and the air bases' garrison was fully alerted and manning its defensive positions.

The Tau suffered heavy casualties in the opening stages of the engagement and their return fire failed to silence the well entrenched artillery and gun positions. Further disaster struck when a sudden white out at the Tau's own air base stopped the launching of the operation's air support leaving the hunter cadre totally isolated.

It seemed the raid would fail utterly but with no chance of extraction there was no choice but to press on. The one thing preventing the utter collapse of the attack was the stealth fields and thick armour that protected the Tau's heaviest guns. Unable to find their targets or advance over the open killing field surrounding their positions the company of Librians defending the base were effectively locked down into their positions. Seemingly immune to harm the Tau Hammerheads were able to probe the perimeter of the facility until they managed to get firing solutions on the Imperial artillery and silence it. As the blizzard finally cleared Barracudas finally began to strafe the Librian's positions, allowing the Tau ground forces to penetrate the bases perimeter.

As contact with their airbase was lost the Imperium became aware of the Tau presence in the system. A probe of the moonbase by Sword class escorts was forced to turn about and flee when they detected Tau capital starships patrolling the outer reaches. The invasion of Tyranteous, until now something only theorised in threat assessments now became a dawning reality for the Imperium.

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