Part 1: Fort Dissent watches some TV
“The Colonies of Refuge stand at a crossroads the likes of which we have not encountered in over one thousand years. After much struggle and sacrifice peace has been reached with many of the Northern Kingdoms. Even more surprising the entity known as Warmonger has been driven from his dimension. Hopefully never again will it trouble us. Sadly, not all of that creatures followers have been dealt with. Even now the Sea Kings continue to raid shipping and a splinter group is currently staging an invasion of I’tashi territory. As most of you know I have been a solider. I saw the Boarder Wars and directed many of the battles that bought them to a close. I know the costs and pain of war but I also know that sometimes against some enemies war must be waged. So it is with many of the Sea Kings. They must be opposed and stopped.
However with the destruction of The Warmonger many things have changed for them as well. They are not the unified force they have been. As a solider I know that sometimes it is better to seek peace than to wage war. To that end my response to the current conflict at Fort Dissent is twofold. Though we have not been asked for military aid at this time I think it would be best to stand ready to deliver whatever assistance may be requested be it military or humanitarian. I also think it would be wise to offer a neutral place for peace talks between the forces of the I’tashi Alliance and the Sea Kings. Such talks may be able produce peaceful results to everyone’s benefit. With the cooperation of the EEF I am prepared to offer to host talks outside of the Colonies. It is my hope that a peaceful resolution can be reached.
I feel I must also address rumors that have come to my attention regarding the abduction of Yildor Roren by known mad man and war criminal Ryuk of Kasanth. I can only assume that this abduction was part of some crazed scheme of Ryuk’s. I would like nothing more than to see him brought to justice for his various and continuing crimes. Neither I nor anyone involved with or employed by my campaign had any involvement with Ryuk or his abduction of Mr. Roren. I submit myself and my campaign to full access investigations by any Colonial authority that wishes to carry out such an investigation. In this way I hope to prove that we are innocent of any involvement in this crime.
As to the supposed involvement of my sister. I find it hard to believe that she would be involved as claimed. I simply believe that there is more to this then is apparent. If she is able I ask my sister to turn herself in to the nearest authorities for her own good. That way she will be safe while this situation is investigated. If she is being held I will do all that I can to see her safely returned to her family. To that end I am willing to pay a thousand ghaz as a reward for anyone who can find and return my sister safely home.”
Sarrick St. John watched the speech of Field Marshall Jeremiah Strykker with interest. The blackmarket Holonet Projector was displaying the speech on a full high definition nanite display. As the tiny robots swirled in the dusty air, light motes would shimmer in between their attempts to form cogent imagery.
Sarrick St.Johns had purchased the rare holonet projector from a bunch of Earther Mercs who were using it to watch I.R. reality shows. And it had been worth every ghaz. In fact, playing the projector in the main war room of the Fort had allowed them all to see that their small conflict was the focus of international news and national elections to the south. This had helped Sarrick to rally the troops when Grand Magi Elijah Morte’s reinforcements never showed up.
It had been a moment of true demoralization but between the holonet projector and a steady stream of Mercs coming to their aid, Sarrick St. Johns had kept this rag tag group of defenders together.
“St.Johns we got another colonial come calling,” said freed Peacebringer Waylon Obrien, “This one brought some air support.”
“Thank the Colonials to come to our side,” St.Johns replied, “Have them brought up to me, we need every bit of air support we could get.”
“Too bad the colonials are in the middle of an election,” replied Obrien, “I remember back when Brigadier General Strykker led the Severance Research Facility. Old I’tash sent us in and the EEFers under Strykkers command pushed back every charge we made. Their Striders were unstoppable. I never thought I’d say this back then, but I’d give my right nut for a Mammoth Artillery Strider in our support.”
“Waylon, we fight with the army we have, not the army we wish we had,” said St.Johns not wanting the wishful thinking of one soldier bring down the rest.
Former Peacebringer Waylon Obrien led in a fellow that Sarrick St.Johns had not yet met.
Dressed up as an Earther and geared up, this new fellow said, “Greetings, I’m Ran. I’m hear to take you up on your offer to help defend this fort, though I will do some of that away from here.
I have a glider I salvaged, and I plan to cause the Sea kings concern so they may hold back their forces some. And if I’m lucky, I may even cause some damage to them. Please don’t shoot me down.
Also, someone should be coming with an Anti Air weapon to help as well.”
At that last line, Sarrick St.Johns took a long look at Ran.
“Hmmm, SOMEONE probably should. But what an odd statement from one who has just arrived at our fort and not even seen our defenses,” said St.Johns, “Luckily Ani G of the Lucky Fate Squad arrived this morning and set up a quad battery of Anti-Air Ma Dueces. Those .50s should make short work of any airships the Sea Kings have stolen.”
At that moment Ani G walked up and gave Ran a greeting like and old friend. Sarrick St.Johns calmed a bit and said, “Sorry Ran, its been tough trying to run a defense force on no budget and with no support coming from Grand Magi Elijah Morte. I have paid these mercs from the ghaz I accumulated freeing manors and slaves during the Border Wars under Synfelt Von Groont’s Panzer Knights.
To be straight and true, my last ghaz will be paying your wage. Ghaz, ghaz I earned liberating the Castle of the Sun from Church of Oners and Glomhammer’s Tyrant Loyalists. After this battle if we do not win, I will have to return to the I’tashi Captial pennyless…”
Former Peacebringer Obrien interrupted, “Sir, you asked me to tell you when the former Church of Oner got on the channel?”