After a decade of political turmoil, the newly-hired Stealthy Tigers mercenaries have decided the civil war on Hall in favor of their employer, emperor William Baranov, as of 3067 by vanquishing the forces of Count Radcliffe McNally in the field. They try to be professional about it and honor their contract, ignoring where their paycheck truly comes from—the Stealthy Tigers have since determined that Baranov has ties to the shadowy Word of Blake sect, but they have no proof.
When the Allied Mercenary Command sends a regiment of the Dismal Disinherited to Hall to investigate a possible Blakist connection, Captain Ezra Payne of the Stealthy Tigers is made their liaison officer as the Dismal Disinherited establish contact with mercenary leader Ellie Burton, mother of McNally's son and now the leader of the shattered opposition forces including the remains of the mercenary Burton's Brigade.
A cunning politician, Baranov tries to play Burton and the AMC against each other and false-flag attacks attempt to sow chaos and mistrust, though Payne's level-headed thinking succeeds in defusing several critical situations.
The Word of Blake meanwhile is active on Hall with two competing factions: Adele Estwicke is Baranov's contact and political advisor, and attempts to maneuver him into a formal political alliance. Her plan eventually falls apart though when Baranov surprisingly announces that he has asked for Hall to be accepted into the Free Worlds League and openly admits that he used and double-crossed her. At this point, the radical and ruthless Sixth of June sect takes over the Word of Blake operations; this includes activating two sleeper agents within the Stealthy Tigers, unit XO Mason Makorja and his twin sister and fellow battalion commander Kirsten Makorja (who underwent training and cybernetic enhancement on Jardine). As it so happens, the inbound 4th Oriente Hussars regiment from the Free Worlds League is rabidly opposed to House Marik, while the Dismal Disinherited on Hall are led by John Marik-Johns, a distant relative of the ruling Marik.
While Ezra Payne and unit CO Yuri Rauschenbusch become increasingly disillusioned with their employer and wary of the dangerous overall situation, the Makorja twins move to bring the Stealthy Tigers under their control, which includes killing Rauschenbusch and setting Payne and his followers up to be killed in battle. The situation eventually comes to a head when Payne and intelligence officers from the AMC forces identify Estwicke's network and Blakist actions against the Stealthy Tigers and devolves into a shooting battle between all parties, with the Stealthy Tigers ending up fighting each other as one side follows their new colonel Mason Markoja while the others believe Ezra Payne's allegations of treason against the Markoja twins. Payne kills Kirsten Makorja in battle, but is himself wounded when his Crusader suffers a hit to its ammunition bins, auto-ejecting him to a hard landing. Ellie Burton meanwhile personally confronts Baranov, and both die in their 'Mech duel.
Beaten, remains of the Stealthy Tigers including Payne flee the planet on one of their DropShips while others remain loyal to Mason Makorja. The Dismal Disinherited are also pushed off-world by the Oriente Hussars. As they withdraw to the jump point, they learn of the Scouring of Outreach and suspected Word of Blake involvement, and the death of Jaime Wolf...
Manufacturer: Catalyst Game Labs Manufacturer SKU: 35820 Dragons Trove ID:
2535 Type: Novel ISBN/UPC:
9781942487234 Condition: New Condition Note: