Soon after their arrival, however, the Reapersâ€™ command cohesion crumbled as various subcommanders clashed bitterly over how to use their meager resources to settle their new home. Company by company, the mercenaries fragmented into ever-smaller camps and scattered across most of the northern deserts, eventually forming the cores of the nomadic tribes and Caliphates that persist today, wearing down their remaining military strength in battle against local pirates and each other.
The society the Reapers tried to build endures in the form of small manufacturing centers and mining enclaves that often anchor the Caliphate city-states near scattered oases, and the distinctly Arabic Muslim overtones of the planetâ€™s decidedly male-dominant culture. Still clinging to the philosophies and traditions of his ancestors, todayâ€™s Astrokaszy is a fearless fighter and horseman. Blood sports â€” one of the few diversions available on this barren planet â€” are a common pastime here, as well as the favored means among the various Caliphs and Pashas for keeping their respective subjects in line.
Even less organized and populous than Antallos, Astrokaszy is a dangerous climate for the new mercenary to seek work, lacking any rule of law beyond the will of the local Caliphate rulers. Here, there are no hiring halls, no neutral meeting centers, no training grounds, and no DropPorts. Finding an employer on this world and negotiating a contract thus carries with it all of the dangers of the mercenary trade on Antallos without even the benefit of the flimsy order imposed by local police and security forces, as what passes for law and order on Astrokaszy is often little more than the whims of the local sultan or caliph.
The closest exception to this rule is the Shervanis Caliphate and its capital city of Shervanis City. Recent conflicts, however, have ravaged even this bastion of semi-civilization, which includes both a small spaceport and the planetary HPG. A short conflict in 3058, involving Capellan, Canopian, and (allegedly) Word of Blake forces, toppled then-Caliph Malachye Shervanis and led to the rise of Caliph Srin Rashier, whose brief, two-day reign consisted almost solely of changing Shervanis Cityâ€™s name to Freedom City. But his rule swiftly ended when the Avantiâ€™s Angels mercenary command, then under Confederation employ, deposed him.
Ahmed Shervanis, Malachyeâ€™s wandering son, then returned to reclaim his birthright with a small army of followers and restored the Shervanis Caliphate to the days of Malachye. Since then, Shervanis has clashed with other Caliphates as well, including the recent war with the Rajirr Caliphate that erupted soon after Caliph Shervanisâ€™ nephew, Badr, was found murdered, apparently on the orders of Najiyah Rajirr, his betrothed. Shervanisâ€™ forces, which include a few BattleMechs, remain weakened by the fighting, but â€” apart from Rashierâ€™s Order of the Faithful band â€” they remain the strongest of all fighting groups on Astrokaszy today.
Despite the recent upheavals, the Shervanis Caliphate remains a hub of commerce and mercenary activity. Mercenaries desperate enough to do business here, however, must often do so by first negotiating with the local city rulers to gain entry into their domains and meet with any potential employer representatives who may be there. Even then, the risk of being shanghaied or killed by locals eager to gain a mercenaryâ€™s weapons and â€™Mech remains uncomfortably high, as most of the local rulers would rather steal a warriorâ€™s ride for their own troopsâ€™ use than entrust their agendas and security to a mere hireling. Nevertheless, it is not uncommon for a green mercenary, desperate for employment, to spend time running errands â€” often illegal and highly dangerous ones â€” just to stay on the local caliphâ€™s good side in the hopes of finding that one lucky break to escape Astrokaszy forever.
All the factors that make Astrokaszy an undesirable place for mercenary commands to seek employment, however, also make it an ideal place to find recruits. Combined with the generalized urge to get off the planet, the barbaric lifestyle required to simply survive on this harsh world creates an almost endless stream of trained fightersâ€”most of whom would jump at any opportunity to join a real mercenary command that can promise both freedom and financial security.
- System Name: Astrokaszy
- Coordinates: -293.29, -317.97
- Star Type: G4V
- Position in System: 3
- Time to Jump Point: 7.98 days
- Recharging Station: None
- ComStar Facility Class: B
- Population: 698
- Percentage and Level of Native Life: 10% Mammal
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