All things considered, the continuing battle for Proserpina was going well tor the embattled Eighth Crucis Lancers. They were outnumbered some three-to-one yet were still holding out against the DCMS forces on the world. By the beginning of 3066, General Marshall had pulled back several hundred kilometers from his initial lines. He'd also dispatched several combat commands to deal with a DCMS force near Conqueror's Pride. But on 18 January, he realized for the first time that the world's people had turned against he and his FedCom "liberators." On that day, a traditional holiday on the world celebrating liberation from a Federated Suns assault centuries earlier, the Eighth Crucis Lancers were the target of a mass uprising of Proserpina's citizens.

Suddenly, the Lancers were put on the defensive by the ISF's information campaign. In just two weeks, the Lancers were pushed back a hundred kilometers while their brigade near Conqueror's Pride was all but wiped out—with Generals Clark, Montgomery and Ritchie listed missing in action and presumed killed. Worse still, the Twelfth Dieron Regulars arrived from Ashio, adding their firepower to the growing forces arrayed against the Lancers.

General Marshall and his senior officers knew they were in serious jeopardy, but they had also been lulled into a false sense of superiority. Until recently, they had delivered defeat after defeat to the Combine forces and they believed they could still do the same. Having retreated to the city of Orleans, the Lancers launched a massive air and ground assault to the north, directly toward the First Ghost. Their assault stalled a day into the operation, though, as the Ghost put up an incredibly strong defense while the First Sword of Light and the Twelfth Dieron launched coordinated attacks from the cast and the south. The Forty-Sixth Dieron followed up a day later with a combat drop on top of Orleans, liberating the city.

The Lancers' attack from Orleans signified the beginning of the end for the FedSuns forces on Proserpina. Sho-sho Shin Yodama finally captured the initiative and ran with it. Yodama pushed the First Sword of Light forward like a taskmaster, forcing the Lancers into engagements favoring his own troops. The third week in February saw the Lancers lose two combat commands to a probing attack that turned into a full-blown assault with the First Ghost and the Twelfth Dieron, while the final week in February ended with another two Lancer combat commands surrounded and subdued.

General Marshall still had two understrength brigades under his command, but he was rapidly running out of space. His assault on the First Ghost had ultimately cost him half of his command and most of his breathing room. The Lancers were almost completely surrounded and not only were they beginning to run low on ammunition and consumables, but their very spirits were on the verge of breaking. Marshall needed to give his troops at least one last victory if they were to last any longer.

He begun this final counterattack on the 4th of March. He again targeted the First Ghost, though this time the thrust was only a diversionary tactic designed to bring additional help into the Ghost's sector and away from the Forty-Sixth Dieron, which was his actual target, Twelve hours into the attack on the Ghost, he released the bulk of his unit to assault the Forty-Sixth. After the first day, Marshall's Lancers broke through the Forty-Sixth and were about to swing about to finish the regiment off when Yodama led the First Sword of Light against the Eighth Crucis Lancers' left flank, quite effectively pinning half of the RCT in place and giving the rest of the DCMS forces the time they needed to regroup and attack.

The morning of the 6th sounded the death knell for the Eighth Crucis Lancers, though the unit took another six days to disintegrate and die. With Marshall having been captured on the 9th in a daring attack on his command post, Leftenant General Do Sy Truscott was the senior officer commanding on the 12th. The 'Mech regiment's fourth battalion and Truscott's own armored regiment accounted for scores of 'Mech and tank kills in the final battle, the assault on Jove. The Lancers held the high ground and made the Combine troops pay for every meter, but in the end the Lancers were simply too far outnum hered. General Truscott Surrendered what was left of the Lancers at 1945 hours on 12 March 30G6, putting an end to the final battle within the Draconis Combine.

Was this article helpful?

0 0

Post a comment