Saturday, August 15, 2015

New Alliance offensive destroys Launceston's Loyalists

While Launceston's loyalist army was still retreating across the northern plains Horon and Hevenia, harried all the way by Vorushko's crusade army, the alliance launched their next major offensive against him. Aware that much of the loyalist army was engaged in a fighting withdrawal in the west, the alliance quickly gathered a sizeable offensive force against the imperium in the east, facing the imperial lines across the Sederra Tundra Highlands in Far Hevenia.

The alliance force was potent. Committing their reserve to this assault in order to break through the Voral defensive line and take Chapel Cross before the crusade, the alliance boasted nearly one hundred librian regiment, the entire (or close to) Iron Warrior's legion led by Apollo himself, Commander Windgather's army and a large contingent of defectors from Vannaheim.

Commander Skyfall's army was sent north in the initial attack, along with much of the Librian force, and the offensive succeeded in creating a ywaning gap in the imperial lines. Into this Apollo lead his elite forces, and on 0808.015M42 the alliance met General Launceston's strategic reserve in the Voral highlands. The heaviest fighting took place at an outpost settlement in the mountain pass, which was the lynch pin of the loyalist defence. Here the imperium had placed their veteran forces, consisting of Novgorod Guard and the Adeptus mechanicus Warhound-knight maniple, the last loyalist mechanicum force on the planet.

In reserve Launceston had the Librian 8th armoured division and the Prozan 9th attack win, and these were quickly committed after the alliance began the assault on the outpost. Initially Windgather suffered horrendous casualties from the Warhound, but the knights in the maniple were quickly eliminated. For a time it looked like the imperium might hold on, as Apollo struggled to get his reserves co-ordinated in the mountainous terrain. Eventually though the ancient astartes commander teleported into battle, and despite losing many of his terminator comrades, Apollo himself survived the titanic energies unleashed by the warhound, and he created a legend for himself as he destroyed the towering war machine in single combat in front of the imperial lines.

The loss of the warhound seriously impacted the loyalist ability to hold the line, as the Novgorod were shredded by artillery and massed fire from Windgathers tau and eldar forces. on the right flank the Librian armoured regiment was battered by a traitor knight and eldar fire dragons, while in the centre the alliance were now able to advance unimpeded. By the end of the day the outpost had been taken, and the imperium were retreating down the southern slopes of the Voral mountains.

With his last defensive position compromised, Launceston's army was soon cut in two, with half retreating back towards Chapel Cross, and the other half caught in the wilderness of Hevenia between the crusade and the alliance. Two days later Launceston disobeyed his commanding office on Libria IV, and offered his surrender to Captain Apollo and the Federacy. The alliance accepted, although it took a while for the tau to agree the surrender to the Federacy and not the alliance. Meanwhile the alliance immediately sent forces to bolster the retreating loyalists against the crusade, allowing those who recognised the new situation to fight on for the Federal army. Most of the Novgorod refused, some even refusing to surrender, but nearly two-thirds of the Librian forces accepted the terms, after a clever ethereal managed to present them in a way consistant with the Librian book of law...

The loyalists had now lost control of Libria III, and the alliance only had to defeat the crusade now to take the prize of the Librian system.

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