In a three-day engagement the skillful handling of the lighter armed but more maneuverable Davion ‘Mechs, in the hands of the Avalon and Ceti Hussars, crushed the Capellan assault and drove the Capellan Household Guards back towards their drop zones. On the forth day of the assault, Ilsa herself was killed in the final rear-guard action that saved the remnant of the Capellan forces. Hereafter, the Red Lancers bore the dual title of the Red Heart Guard in commemoration of their fallen commander.
 Neither Colonel Archibald McCarron nor his regimental commanders found much comfort in the post-Fourth Succession War era. They welcomed any hope of battle, for they knew that would at least keep the Chancellor and her evil eye from targeting them as she had struck out at so many of her other military leaders. McCarron was surprised when three CCAF senior colonels visited him on Menke in May of 3039, and all but stunned when they suggested he undertake an operation of such magnitude into the Federated Suns. But as he looked over the intelligence reports that they had brought with them, McCarron was quickly won over.
By no means a full-fledged invasion, it was in fact more than anything designed to be more of a morale-building exercise. The CCAF had just recently driven the Canopians from their nation, but that victory was tempered by the fact that it took five years to do so. The CCAF needed was a true victory, one that was unmistakable and could proclaim to the entire Human Sphere that the Confederation was still a military power, and who better to target than the mighty Federated Suns.
The sixth world to feel the sting of Archie McCarron was Orbisonia. The First MAC — the Nightriders — pushed hard to make it to Orbisonia as quickly as they could, even enduring a 2-G burn-in to the world. Lacking anything of strategic value, the world has held a dark distinction within the Capellan military since Chancellor Ilsa Liao lost her life there in 2828. Since that time, the CCAF had all but avoided the world, almost in a superstitious fashion. But the Nightriders had no such qualms.
They attempted the same lightning strike that worked so well on Bethel, but they hadn’t accounted for the AFFS’ 4212th Tactical Fighter Wing or the two wings of conventional fighters that the Orbisonia Militia flew. The Nightriders’ own fighters were instantly overwhelmed, and the mercenaries had to fight hard just to secure a landing zone on the world. The FedSuns fighters continued to bomb and strafe them for two straight days, preventing the mercenaries from breaking out to even attempt a strike on one of the airbases that their opponents were using.
By the third day, the Nightriders realized that they would never be able to strike out without the cover of severe weather or an act of God, neither of which were likely. The mercenaries pulled out later that day, apparently the victims of the same bad karma that befell Chancellor Ilsa more than two centuries earlier.
- System Name: Orbisonia
- Coordinates: 151.52, -156.48
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