Saturday, March 25, 2017

Libria I Current

Libria I: Novato retaken, Vorushko visited by "old friend"

In 03.17M42 the loyalists on Libria I were visited by a new delegation. General Zhukov met with the leader of the armed detachment, recognising the Inquisitorial seal immediately. Introducing herself as Inquisitor Kataryina Greyfax, she brought him a message from Haskell. "I am well, receive my colleague in good faith. She is for the emperor in her heart". Zhukov recognised the writing and the specific inflexions of the great Inquisitor Haskell, and accepted Greyfax's forces and council. What was said between the two will remain private, but she did let the general know why she was here, and why she had come now.

Originally a Puritan Ordo Hereticus Inquisitor, Greyfax had seen so much, and had her eyes opened in the fall of Cadia. This was the first Zhukov new of the fall and he grieved. Greyfax then told him of the coming of Guilliman, explaining that Haskell could not return to the Aleph Sector while events on Terra required his attention. Here however Greyfax had a personal matter to deal with. The crusade she said, must be stopped. The puritan view she had so ardently adhered to, had been proved false. The true purpose and will of the Emperor had been revealed to her and must also be revealed, through force if necessary to her one time friend and colleague, Natalia Vorushko, Inquisitor lord and leader of the Crusade...

Battles in the Deeps

In the early weeks of 017M42 the Imperium faced more threats in the Perseus Deeps than they were able to deal with. Raids on colonies across the Deeps forced Sector Commander Titus Luthor to reinforce Bastion and the outlying systems with fresh units of Guard. The first of these were a force of Volscians. Luthor knew that the Volscians were fighting for the crusdade on Libria, and therefore found all Volscians under his command as unreliable. By posting them to Aethor, where the eldar attacks were at their worst, he hoped to remove them from possible altercations with other regiments fighting on the side of the loyalists. In addition he deployed additional Vedrian and Lycaon units to the planet.

Aethor had been under sustained assault from the eldar for over a year. Unknown to the imperium Aethor was a strategic target for the Eldar, and the recently emergent "Ynnari" faction were no exception. Like their heralds, the Disciples of Y'nead, the Ynnari knew that imperial "Mon Keigh" presence on Aethor was intolerable, and despite having been warned the stubborn humans remained.

The attacks, started by the Disciples, were continued by their successors, and the Ynnari gained ground at first, eliminating the Vedrian guard at an imperial outpost near a webway portal. However the Volscians were harder to crack, and managed to beat off a Ynnari attack in the north of the colony. Things remained evenly balanced on Aethor.

The Dark Eldar, led by Vlokarion, continued their own agenda, raiding and defeating the Charnovokh dynasty throughout the early weeks of the year. On Calliden, capital of the Necron empire in the Deeps, the ruler of the Charnovokh and Harakhty dynasties, Overlord Arakamen, realised that without the help of the Imperium, his empire could fall to ruin. The necrons could not afford to fight the eldar and the tyranids alone, with the alliance on their borders. Only the Imperium, who could be manipulated, would allow the necrons to defend and rebuild their empire. Arakamen needed a strong Imperium as a bulwark against his enemies. The overlord began opening his negotiations...

The fall of Hemera

While the Imperium were distracted with their own schisms and the alliance on the eastern fringe, more and more resources were drained from the already tenuous Imperial possessions in the Perseus Deeeps. By late 016M42 the imperial garrison on Hemera had already put down several "populist risings", only to find in early 017M42 that a genestealer cult, a vanguard tendril of Hive Fleet Nemesis, had taken over vital installations and declared itself the new government.

In response the Space Wolves and Darrantine Guard were dispatched by Sector Commander Titus Luthor. However when they arrived the imperial forces faced frenzied attacks, not just from cultists but purestrain genestealers. Days of protracted fighting became a desperate holding action as the xenos forces overran the imperial forces and beseiged the only way off the planet, the imperial spaceport.

The small colony received unexpected aid from the eldar, who appeared from the webway to try to reverse the tyranid gains. It was to no avail and the eldar, of the recently discovered "Ynnari faction", were soon overrun themselves and found themselves fleeing into the webway. They never made it to the besieges imperial forces, and all but a few astartes were massacred in the final moments of Hemera's fall.

Alliance invade Libria II: Space Wolves annihilated

The response by the alliance to the crusade raid was swift, but not directly against the crusade. The policy of the alliance had always been to divide and conquer, and now they put this firmly into action. Aware that the crusade were still unable to respond in a meaningful way against the alliance hold over the central planets of the system, the tau and federal forces brought forward their planned incasion of Libria II. If they could secure the second planet of the Libria system this would leave the loyalists confined to Libria I, where they were already at war with the crusade, and the crusade holding the solitary outer planet of Libria V.

The invasion was led by the human forces of the alliance. The Council felt that the "liberation" of the population would be better led by rebel forces, and the Lycaon rebels were selected to be the vanguard. Discussions over the inclusion of Libria into the Federacy or the Tau empire would wait for now. United the alliance forces landed uncontested, enjoying total superiority in space and quickly estabklishing a bridgehead. The loyalists however had not left their only base undefended, and the Space Wolves responded to the invasion while General Zhukov continued the offensive on Libria I.

The battle itself went badly for the Space Wolves. Surprised by the strength of the forces involved in the invasion, and initially believing the alliance attack to be an exploratory raid, the astartes found themselves overwhelmed and outflanked. In hours the Space Wolves were routed, allowing the alliance to secure their landing site and taking the settlement of Macdonald without difficulty.