Sunday, April 14, 2013
Tau launch new offensive on Tyranteous
After several patient weeks the tau were confident enough that their initial bridgehead was secure to launch their new offensive against the Imperium. Events on Tyranteous' Moon by the forces of Lorek had put their schedule back and reduced the overwhelming force the tau could deploy, but the tau commanders were happy with their plans.
The first assault came in the east, as Commander Moonshine was given the task of clearing the region of Odinvale. This operation was vital, if not directly of strategic use to the tau, because of the threat to the tau flank even a small number of forces in the east posed to their position. Moonshine moved his troops forward and Tyranteous and Zadoc regiments were easily routed. Detecting a renewed offensive, General Denham responded quickly to the renewed activity, resulting in the Space Wolves deployed to Tyranteous springing into action. Dropping from orbit, the space wolves confronted the main vanguard forces of Moonshine in the Odin Valley south of the Merdin Massif. After a protracted and vicious battle the Space Wolves realised they would be unable to stop the tau advance and risked getting surrounded unless they pulled out. With the astartes forces gone the imperial resistance in Odinvale was fatally compromised and the imperium soon lost their best opportunity to threaten the tau hold on the north.
Following Moonshine's success the second phase of the operation swung into action. A large force of hunter cadres attacked the imperial lines west of the Merndin Massif, where Denham had deployed his best troops and strongest defences. The resulting battle, occurring in an obvious tau line of advance, was bloody and costly to the tau. The attack stalled, then fell apart, and for a while Denham's headquarters were hoping for a breakthrough to launch their own counter attack.
While Imperial HQ were preparing to mobilise the Prozan Air Cavalry to launch a decisive blow in the north, word came of attack by Commander "Windgather" (a name given to him by the Imperium) in the south. The tau had skilfully deployed new forces on the shores of the Kethick Sea, and now these highly mobile forces, using the latest in tau technology including two formidable "Riptide" battlesuits, launched a ferocious attack against the Librian Guard.
The Librians, used to fighting Tau, were none-the-less taken by surprise by the new alien technology, and many mistakes were made. Despite eventually destroying the tau battlesuits the Librians suffered heavily at the hands of the tau army, falling prey to effective combined arms tactics from an alien enemy which had learned a great deal from previous encounters with the Librians.
By 1604.013M42 the position was dire, and Denham ordered all forces back to defend Hammerton. He was just in time, and the Corellian and Prozan units executed a skillful fighting withdrawal to extricate themselves from a rapidly closing trap. By 1804.013M42 the line had been stabilised, but much of North Landing had now been lost, and the tau were knocking on the door of Hammerton itself.