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      Hello new member   02/03/2018

      Welcome to Europa. This site is part of the region of Europa in the online game NationStates. The region of Europa is a diverse community of nations, with a wide range of political and ideological values, working together through various institutions and alliances - at least when they're not threatening to go to war with each other. Whether you want to play it safe with a liberal democracy, set up a communist regime, or rule your citizens with an iron fist and the threat of turning them into dog food, Europa is a great region to play in. As one of the oldest regions in the game, everybody who's anybody wants to try their hand at ruling their own country right here in Europa. Just head on over to the Forum and have a read through the sticky threads. If you're curious about how all of this work, we've included some helpful links to get you started. A good place to start is our Hitchhickers Guide to Europa. Roleplayers will be glad to see our honest and fair RP rules. Check out our map versions and discover how to apply. Experiencing problem with this website? Our helpdesk is always open. Have fun! -- The Europans Team
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Prymont

Project Canamo

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News travelled fast in north Argis. Prymont, @Ahrana, and @The Hellenic Rus had shared waters in the Canamo Sea for centuries, and thus shared information. If something happened in Ahrana, The Hellenic Rus and Prymont were the first to know. This allowed quick action before international parties could become involved, usually giving the neighbours the upper hand in reactions. And so, when a distress signal was sent from citizens within The Hellenic Rus announcing that the government had collapsed, it took only minutes for military leaders to spring into action.

Commander's Office | 0747hrs
Fort Kanacky
Verandi

General Hunter S Grey had been the Defence Minister for the United States of Prymont only for five months, but had decades of experience within government and military service in his belt. He'd worked closely with the communist Freedom Party of yesteryear to strengthen the military, but not close enough to be thrown out of any position of power when the National Party won the 2017 elections. Grey had served his country for twenty years, before being given a cushy office job in Fort Kanacky. From there, he took regular trips to New Halsham to meet with government officials and update them on his work. After bugging them for months, they let him in to parliament, where he stretched his legs and began laying the foundations that would build him up to the present day. He took the role of Defence Minister more seriously than Duval did of President, and hurried to the Commander's Office to meet with the Field Marshal of the USP Ground Force immediately when a distress signal from The Hellenic Rus was received.

Field Marshal Theodore Houston had welcomed Grey with open arms. The two were friends from way back when, and often enjoyed a night at the pub when off duty. Houston had heard about the signal and was about to contact Grey on speed dial when he showed up at the office.

"What do you think, then?" Houston asked, scanning international news feeds for any reports of the signal. As of yet, there were none.

"It's an opportunity."

"For?"

"What do you think? That country has gone to sh*t, but God's knows how. With the resources they have, there should've been a mutual agreement to settle this months ago."

"Hunter... you do know the Circle of Death don't make mutual agreements like we do, yes?" 

"Of course, I'm not a child! They're mad men, and something should've been done. I'm not surprised their government fell. Weak bastards."

"Yeah, it's not surprising at all. But what do you propose? What can we do? We only hindered them with the naval blockade. You think Duval would want to help them?"

"He would if he knew what was good for him."

"You're going to threaten the President?" Houston leaned forwards, intrigued yet worried. Grey had always been known as the mysterious type, and while Houston had grown to know him better over the years, he never could crack that crazy mind of his.

"Not threaten... just suggest."

"I still don't know what you're getting at."

"The international community would expect us, their neighbours, to help. But that's a waste of money. Our international aid fund has always been piss poor, and Duval won't change that. He might crumble to international pressure, but he will crumble to us. If we help them, what's in it for us?"

"A good reputation? An ally when they recover?"

"Are you going batty in your old age, Theo? Land! That was what Ahrana got pissed off at us for when we set up the blockade. Apparently, it was international waters. If we get our flag onto the west of the Canamo, they've got nothing to moan about."

"So you think we should expand? Is that what you're saying?"

"First, I think we should cancel the blockade. You get the admiral to call it off. I'll speak to Duval."


To: Premier Field Marshal Gregor Ivanoff of Ahrana
From: President George Duval of the United States of Prymont

Mr Ivanoff,

One month has passed since the United States enacted a naval blockade at the mouth of the Canamo Sea. After the recent news of the collapse of The Hellenic Rus' government, the estimated threat level of the Circle of Death has diminished greatly. While we still believe that members of the Circle of Death are active within The Hellenic Rus, we do not believe that a full naval blockade is necessary from this point onwards. 

In an act of recognition for the new communist government of Ahrana, recognising the Socialist Government, the United States wishes to work with Ahrana to secure our continental neighbourhood and prevent further attacks from the Circle of Death. The United States are willing to return Prymontian ships back to their respective ports on the mainland, allowing Ahranaian ships back into the Canamo Sea. In return, the United States asks that Ahranaian ships heading towards Ahrana report to a dedicated port on Horizon Island, where they will report their contents and be briefly searched for terrorists. This will only be a temporary measure, as the United States also asks that Ahrana allows an executive military board into your great country so that Prymont can react firmly with Ahrana when future terrorist plots arise. 

Communism is woven deeply into the historic roots of the United States of Prymont. The United States was founded by a communist party, and has only recent moved to more capitalistic ideologies. Communism is still fresh in our minds, and we sympathise with the new Socialist Government. I hope, on behalf of the entirety of the United States, that this is the beginning of a fruitful relationship between our country and yours. Together, we can eliminated the Circle of Death and make our neighbourhood safer.

Yours sincerely,

George Duval
President of the United States of Prymont

Edited by Prymont

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To: President George Duval, United States of Prymont

From: Premier Field Marshal Gregor Ivanoff, Socialist Federation of Ahrana

President George Duval,

On behalf of the People of the Federation we great you with open arms of embrace and look forward in cooperation with your Country. With the Blockade of your Navy ending and normal flow of ships entering and leaving the possibility for an attack by the CoD is still relevant. If an operation to end the CoD and their activities are going to be proposed by your Government then the Socialist Federation asks that we may join in on the Operation.

We also thank you and your Country for the recantation of the Socialist Government as the successor state to the Royal Government. We also ask that if you have any Ahranaians living in your Country illegally we ask that they be sent home at the most convenient time for your Government Officials.

In regards to allowing a Military Board of Foreign Nationals, this will have to be sent to the Congress and the other sections of Government to see if the Government would allow it. I would allow it but I must share Authority on this matter as an Elected Head of Government.

 

With gratitude,

Premier Field Marshal Gregor Ivanoff, Socialist Federation of Ahrana

 

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To: Premier Field Marshal Gregor Ivanoff of Ahrana
From: President George Duval of the United States of Prymont

Mr Ivanoff,

Thank you for your response. Working closely with affected nations to ultimately eliminate the threat of the Circle of Death is one of the United States' most prioritised goals, and I can confirm that we would be delighted to receive any assistance from Ahrana in pursuing this. Our end goal is to ensure a safe country for the future generations, and by working together to eradicate the Circle of Death, we are one step closer to this goal.

Concerning Ahranaian nationals, several hundred refugees have been gathered at our southern border over the past week. They are currently being held at a secure location, where background checks are being carried out to ensure the safety of our nation. The United States would be more than happy to work peacefully with Ahrana to return these nationals to their home country in an efficient manner. 

As for the military executive board, we await the decision of your government on this matter. I appreciate that it takes time and there are many factors to consider, and also appreciate your personal willingness to permit this action. In an act of goodwill, a selection of ships are already returning from the naval blockade to allow more Ahranaian ships into the Canamo Sea. Hopefully, this will persuade your government to see the good in our nature and to speed up the process.

Yours sincerely,

George Duval
President of the United States of Prymont

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Posted (edited)

All was quiet on the @Ahranain front. A handful of ships had returned from the naval blockade, allowing a trickle of cargo and cruise ships to return to their ports. However, the lack of news from the government as to whether a military board would be permitted or not was disheartening, to say the least. General Grey had hoped for a quick decision in order to swiftly execute his plan. He still hoped for an eventual decision, but for now, an alternative route would have to be taken.

An order was sent to Fort Kanacky, intended for the Air Chief Marshal of the USP Air Force. A Robin F-E Soniskstråle was to be readied for imminent takeoff, its destination a quick hop across the sea to The Hellenic Rus. The mission was to be a short one. Aerial reconnaissance would be carried out over the skies of The Hellenic Rus at Mach 2, mapping out the landscape while going quick enough to avoid any rebel missiles. If all went to plan, it'd be back home within half an hour. 

Upon receiving the order, a dark hangar in the corner of the airfield sprang into action. Floodlights illuminated the sleeping beast, FE002, awakening the bird from its long slumber. Figures in bright luminescent orange clothing flanked the jet, delicate hands carrying out pre-flight checks. The technology was already ageing, but still required the utmost precision. One wrong move, and a very expensive, beloved bird would be no more. Two pilots emerged, wearing what could easily be mistaken as orange spacesuits. They climbed the stainless steel ladder to the helm of the plane, easing themselves into the cockpit. Flying the Soniskstråle was an irregular occurrence, and the adrenaline was pumping through their veins like the very first time. 

With a dedicated army of men working hard, pre-flight checks were completed in record breaking time. This wasn't war, but General Grey would enforce the feeling of fighting for life and death regardless. To him, a simple reconnaissance flight was life or death. His job was his life, and taking over part of The Hellenic Rus was now his duty. The feeling would be enforced upon those below him, whether they liked it or not. As such, the Soniskstråle was prepared as if it was readying for evacuation. A heavy, slow tug brought the jet out into the darkness of the night, a rainbow of colours lining the runways. Inbound Lysstråles, returning home from a border patrol, were redirected to a second runway. They touched down perfectly, leaving behind thin trails of smoke as their engines died down. They wouldn't be heard anyway over the dominating roar of the Soniskstråle's incredible turbojets, the supersonic twins screaming into life as they warmed up. Now in position, the tug departed and scurried away, returning to the safety of the shadows. 

Flights from the nearby Rettenmyr airport in New Halsham were temporarily delayed. Aircraft at Fort Kanacky were grounded for a period of time. When the Soniskstråle awoke, everything yielded. This was the epitome of the United States of Prymont's Air Force, and nothing could get in its way. Air stewards awaited with baited breath as air traffic control gave clearance. Within seconds, FE002 was in the air, soaring high towards The Hellenic Rus. 

From the ground, if one looked closely enough, they'd see a bright, burning light, rocketing towards space. The Soniskstråle distorted the air behind it, the Robin's belly glowing red hot. It was an unstoppable missile, a torch leading Prymont to the future. FE002 was responsible for completing the first step of taking over The Hellenic Rus, and by God, would it do a bloody good job.

a0c8bf9142ac5c5daa1fe6c7348a0498--blackb

Edited by Prymont
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Posted (edited)

January [|||||], 2018

5 km North of Salonica, Hellenic Russia

The night was still, the heavens were lightless. Neither golden orb nor glittering flecks of silver visited--a Bandit's Moon.

A small group of armed militants slowly walked into the silent remains of the forest camp, just a few clicks north of the rebel-controlled capital, Salonica. The strewn remains of offal and ripped baggage were all that remained of the CoD splinter group that had previously dominated this area.

Once they had reached the centre--still cautious with weapons drawn, painted figures started emerging from around the detritus, materialising like they had peeled themselves from the surfaces of the walls and upturned trucks.

The militants almost panicked, their weapons raised around in jerky motions. The militant's leader, a shaven, scarred man with a mangled left earlobe said something to the group, his guards. They seemed reluctantly ease-up.

The ring of figures, in fatigues and adorned in war paint, were all around them and holding weapons that were commonplace--Varinco AG-56s and GAGs. It struck the shaven man as off that they seemed strangely well put together for another strong-arm enforcer group. Some had optics and attachment too expensive looking for the post-governmental Hellenic Rus.

Curious as it was, the militants gaze soon shifted to a new figure. A giant of a man that emerged from the remains of a large, half-collapsed tent. He wore olive drab fatigues, the jacket of which hung from his right shoulder. His bared chest and arms were revealed in what little natural light there was to be a tapestry of inked and scar-lined leather. His eyes, below a tightly cropped head of greying black, twinkled with an almost playful malice, evil replacements for the absent stars. At his hip was a large knife, and in his hand was a tall bottle of half-drunken spirit.

"You have it for me?", came the giant's rasping growling voice, like a heavy metal weight being dragged across cement.

The shaven-headed militant leader had to tighten his fist a few times to prevent the shakes from being too apparent. From his inner pocket, he withdrew a small envelope. In the space between his heartbeat, the painted giant closed the distance between them and leisurely picked the envelope out of the man's hand. 

"And this is it?", asked another voice, it belonged to a man standing just a few paces behind the painted giant. The militants had almost overlooked this figure, a wiry, tall man in plain black fatigues and balaclava, wearing nothing else to identify him by other than a sleek looking pistol and a sturdy plate-carrier. The masked figure regarded the militant leader as he stepped forward and received the envelope from the painted giant's hand.

His fingers pried the seal open and tempted the two flash drives out from the paper container. The figure held them up for inspection, his steely eyes seeming to dart across the small chip drives with a sharpness that almost stung.

When the masked man turned to regard the militants, a sudden chill seemed to fall around the clearing. The eyes were char-black and searching, scanning. Where the painted giant's eyes had twinkled, the masked figure's only seemed to erode what little illumination existed.

"You are sure this gives us everything for the Salonica Air Defence Umbrella?", continued the tall masked man. His Hellenic was crisp, formal and so phonetically precise that there was almost no hint of any identifiable accent. The shaven militant looked to the painted giant, who in turn seemed to have expected this and said nothing. Catching himself, he replied quickly.

"Ehm," he began, clearing his throat. "Yes. Like we promised... and... our end of the deal?", ventured the shaven man cautiously.

A pregnant pause.

"Of course."

The reply was almost a whisper. The shaven man couldn't see it, but he almost certainly felt the tall masked figures lips curl upwards.

It was over in an instant. Four of the other painted figures had somehow shimmered into being behind them and deftly stuck steel into his guards' carotids, as easily as one would stick a fish.

"As promised", said the mask.

"Passage for one."


 

As USP officials would find later that morning, the Salonica air defence system would suddenly go offline, and restart again in the space of a few minutes. While previously under militant control and ageing well into their 30th year of existence, the Salonica Air Defence System was nothing to be underestimated by any sane commander. Radar and Infrared systems could easily harass the lower flying support and utility craft of most aerial militaries, making supply and support runs for the benefit of any invading force quite problematic.

Prymontian Intelligence would later receive a data packet from an insider trusted asset which would contain new IFF codes to allow their aircraft to glide through without molestation. Whether the average infantryman or the common pilot thought this was odd or not, wouldn't create a lasting curiosity. As many a common soldier either knows or comes to learn all too well--never look a gift horse in the mouth.


 

For detailed reference:

Special Security Office (SSO)

 

Edited by Iverica
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January 5, 2018

SSO Safe House, Somewhere in the Salonica Administrative Region

 

[Transmission- Encrypted]

<code burst>Callsign Shrike, Callsign Swallow, Callsign Lark-- be advised, HQ has just given green light for full transition into Operation Cold Wind . <code burst>

<code burst> HQ has greenlit the further use of Black Assets, and is currently deploying additional operatives to expand your AO. Follow procedure for reception of reinforcing units, Callsign Kingfisher. <code burst>

<code burst> Aim for full operational capability up to phase 2 of Cold Wind<code burst>

<code burst>Nest Actual, out<code burst>

[Transmission Ends]

OOC: SSO is preparing to consolidate their hold on the region by deploying more assets to reinforce their intelligence and direct action apparatuses. Black Assets are second-party cooperative assets unaffiliated with the SSO. Regular reports with locations of militant ammo dumps, facilities, and other exploitable positions have been relayed preemptively. Certain highways, ports, and airstrips have also been secured. TLDR: the SSO has dug in deep.

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Posted (edited)

Defence Minister's Office | 1220hrs
5 January 2018
New Halsham
Courtmarsh

 

The news of @Iverican agents within The Hellenic Rus upping their game had been gratefully received. Upon arranging communication links between the United States and their ally, General Grey had insisted upon the messages being sent directly to him instead of the President. He was, after all, the Minister of Defence. It made sense for military messages to be directed to him, so he could prioritise the President's workload - or, in Grey's mind, he could surprise Duval and go behind his back. 

Recent Soniskstråle reports showed that The Hellenic Rus had sizeable oil fields that were being exploited before the government collapsed. Resources were a large part of the Prymontian invasion, but Iverica had to be rewarded too. With their economy welcoming KAP manufacturing plants, and their recent purchase of Aamotech units, the two nations had grown ever closer. Allowing them access to the oil would ease the costs of production, boosting KAP shares and, in turn, the United States' economy. Access to the liquid gold was given as a token of thanks, for securing major roads, airstrips, and ports on the western coast. They'd done their part to make landfall more streamlined for Prymont's forces, and would be generously rewarded.

Things were falling in place nicely for the beginning of Phase II. Phase I, which was the gathering of intelligence, had been carried out by Iverican undercover forces since the middle of 2017, and was rounded off with an aerial reconnaissance mission. It was now clear as to when and where Prymontian and @Ahranaian forces could arrive in the fallen country and start the fight. Several cities had been viciously attacked by the Circle of Death, who were now making a resurgence since Hellenic Russian counter-terrorist forces had taken a hit due to the collapse. However, nowadays the CoD made up one of several rogue rebel forces throughout the country, all of which were progressing towards the capital in the hopes of taking ultimate control. Unorganised, weak groups would be no match for the highly trained USP Ground Forces, who would work in collaboration with the Elite Prymontian Defence Force to slice through those that stood in their way. 

Blood would be shed. That was for sure. General Grey was expecting many Prymontian lives to be lost, but it was all in the name of expansion. They'd joined the military knowing full well that war could be initiated at any time, and they'd eagerly fight for their country. They'd fight for a better, freer future, and that would be achieved when Salonica was under the firm grip of Prymont. From there, it would be a case of northern expansion, securing the western strait of the Canamo Sea to control entry into the gulf. This would restore the once lost naval superiority that Prymont historically exercised, rendering the United States as a force to be reckoned with on the Argic continent once again. With the rise of the rogue nation @Derthalen on the horizon, and the uncertainty of Ahrana's future, military superiority was a must. Invading The Hellenic Rus was a step in the right direction.

Under the orders of General Grey, relayed through the respective commanders of the three military departments, soldiers across the nation were placed on standby for deployment. The Air Force would strike first, eliminating coastal threats, allowing clear access for the Navy to deploy Ground Force troops who would do the grunt work. Escorted by the Air Force, the men on the ground would work their way towards the capital, eliminating rogue groups and planting the seeds of basic infrastructure in the cities along the way. Once at the capital, they'd eradicate sympathisers of the former government and implement their own politicians, providing aid to the ill and needy, and making casual comments on how Prymont were the saviours of the day. Internationally, it would be made clear that this was simply humanitarian work, and if the Ivericans were discovered, they were helping too. Ahranaian forces would be guided from the south, but until Operation Tremor was completed, General Grey was unsure of how much they could be trusted. It would make sense for them to provide relief to their neighbours too, and so that cover would also be provided if necessary.

Another email then popped up on the general's screen - this one was from Ahranaian officials, informing him that their squadrons had landed by Lac Venége. Operation Tremor was well underway. He called through for his secretary, whose head appeared by the door.

"Get in touch with Duval. Tell him we're ready."

Edited by Prymont
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Posted (edited)

 

January 7, 2018

Krushev Province, 80 km North of Salonica

"HOOK UP, HOOK UP!", shouted the jump master, waving his arm in a chopping motion.

Twin lines of 20 SO/AR in the interior cabin of the CP-2 Bufalo stood simultaneously and clipped on to the cable running the length of the bay. Hours earlier, two flights of four Bufalo transport craft had taken off from the VRI General Luna, an amphibious assault ship plus strike group loitering north-west of the Prymontian Strait's mouth. 

The 160 strong wave of special forces were the vanguard, tip of the spear, edge of the knife. They would drop in, secure nearby airfields for more battalion assets to land.  This was a Black Op, capture was an immediate burn-notice--as good as a death sentence. All the men of the 3rd SO/AR Battalion committed to this operation wore unaffiliated uniforms and prop patches ghosting a Private Military Contractor registered in @St Francoisbourg

Once fully deployed, the SO/AR Battalion was expected to be without support for any period between a few days to 2 weeks. Their job was to do what the SSO could not--direct action in force. They would exploit the weaknesses that the SSO team had been picking at for the past half-year, eliminate High-Value Targets, disrupt militant activity around critical areas, and collect the vital military intelligence such as ground surveys, close recce of enemy positions, and sabotage of key enemy infrastructure. SO/AR was hardened in the fires of Counter-Insurgency operations in Vasqqa state, spending months operating in silence and striking at positions unassailable by conventional means. This is what SO/AR had been created for.

"CHECK. LINE."

"CHECK. EQUIPMENT"

The platoon members shook each other down for final checks. Intel had it that DZ had been cleared by a spook unit named "Callsign Swallow", but SO/AR never took any chances. The Bufalo flight would come in under cover of darkness, flying high above the morning's, particularly low cloud cover. They would then dive once near the DZ on final approach for a Low-Altitude, Low-Opening. That gave operators only 200 metres of fall to pull their 'chutes.

No room for error.

The light in the bay went from red to green as the rear ramp squealed open, filling the interior with the howl of chilly morning wind.

"LOAD DROP!"

Four large metal tubes that were in front of the two lines were pushed out.

"ON. MY. GO"

Each member of the platoon, clad in spotted flecktarn BDUs, black and olive warpaint, braced for the quick sprint off a short ramp.

"GO!"

And the first of them dove straight into the waiting maw of darkness.

This was Operation Black Snow

RoQ5q3Zm.jpg


 January 6, 2018

Salonica, Capitol Avenue

The figure masked in a balaclava panned his head from left to right, slowly and deliberately. Observing what had once been the Salonica stronghold of the CoD splinter group. Now it was his.

The dug-in militants hadn't been defeated by any flashy tour de force or strength of might. It had simply been won by a foe smaller than any other.

Cholera.

When the first few score had started to expire from sh*tting themselves to death, the militant's resolve crumpled like a paper boat in a child's hand. All he had to do then was ask. 

Their surrender was what he had wanted in first place. It needed to avoid a drawn-out slug-fest, it needed to secure more manpower and resources with a loss of his own. It needed to be won without fighting.

The solution, of course, was a vulnerability they never expected. He simply had his men take control of the water pumping facility nearby, blow some holes into a few cisterns and wait.

It took about a week.

There was a whimper from behind him.

They had even given up their own leader.

ukrainewar1.jpg


In the days following the launch of Operation Black Snow, and the finale of Operation Cold Wind, analysts would note two things.

The first was that several group strongholds inside Salonica had been occupied by the Sarov Resistance Army (SARRA), after they had sabotaged their drinking water cisterns by diverting sewage into sapper-prepared breaches.

The second was the sudden reports of bomb-makers, group leaders, and entire facilities around the countryside being eliminated at the same time a PMC group had allegedly been sighted in sporadic and wild-eyed reports of raving survivors. Inexplicably, hidden minefields were found to have been breached, spiderholes, and ammunition dumps raided with a speed and efficiency that could only suggest that they had been informed by someone on the inside...

---

 

 

Edited by Iverica
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Military Port Canastota | 0714hrs
8th January 2018
Canastota
Ostport

 

Describing the past forty eight hours as 'chaotic' would be an understatement at the least. If you could take chaos, program it with weird alien tech from the @Sunset Sea Islands, pump it full of drugs from the finest @Variotan nightclubs, and smash it to pieces with a KAP R2, you still wouldn't come close to describing how crazy the military port at Canastota had been lately. The call from General Grey, disguised as President Duval, had come at dusk on the 5th of January. The reality of the situation was only realised the following day, and all hell broke loose.

The United States of Prymont as an entity hadn't ever invaded another country. Before the merge, Ostport had exercised a strong navy, and Aelmount had a considerable air force for what was a small country. North Prymont relied on its mountains for geographical protection, while the Prymont Republic simply struggled. Battle and hardship was known to all four territories, but united as one, it was a thick, impenetrable fog. Nobody would know whether the invasion into The Hellenic Rus would be successful, as the three forces hadn't been utilised in such a way yet. While the United States only wanted a small part of the country, it was a monumental undertaking.

When the call had been received in Canastota, everyone sprang into action. The FE002 Soniskstråle was sent on another flight to test the IFF codes provided by @Iverica's insiders, allowing Prymontian jets freedom within The Hellenic Rus' airspace. Upon the jet's return only half an hour later, the codes were confirmed to be legitimate. Aerial imagery showed that Sarov Resistance forces were converging at Port Sarov, the cleared port of destination for the United States' ships. The USS Defender, the Navy's pride and joy aircraft carried, recently returned from the Canamo blockade, would lead the way. Thirty Aamotech Sveverstråles, known to the Air Force simply as 'VTOL F-As', were loaded onto the majestic ship, fully armed with the latest in air-to-surface missiles. They would operate from Port Sarov, which would act as a base of operations while troops made their way to Salonica. The Sveverstråles were to be accompanied by Aeromax F-I attack helicopters, providing close air support to ground forces in order to slash their way through rogue opponents. 

Away from the shore, Stinger F-Gs were loaded up with an armada of supplies, ranging from medicine and clothing to ammunition and anti-Hellenic Russian propaganda. Tornados, Blackbombs, and Sparrows were readied and placed on standby for further air-to-surface attacks, playing a support role to the Sveverstråle. The best soldiers from barracks across the country were selected and sent straight to Canastota, their commanders providing them with mission briefings for the journey. They would arrive at Port Sarov either by air or on transport and landing ships, and would begin rebuilding the lost infrastructure in the port. Port Sarov, currently used by the Sarov Resistance as a headquarters, would become the main trading port of the soon-to-be Prymontian Rus. Its facilities had been largely preserved by the Sarov fighters, who were quick to sweep the area and secure transport routes. All that would be required was updating the technology, rebuilding the few destroyed or damaged structures, and supporting the public.

Soldiers from all three departments at Canastota were briefed on how to deal with the public. There were to be minimal offensive actions against them. Prymont were the good guys here, swooping in to save the day, provide humanitarian aid, offer crops and fertile soil for the farmers, and rebuild the infrastructure. They were eradicating the evil of the Circle of Death, who had brought on the demise of the government, and were introducing Hellenic Russians to the new walks of life. Peace loving, freedom spreading Prymontians would show them how to truly live, providing a safe haven and countless opportunities to explore and enjoy the world. The Hellenic Rus' former government was corrupt, evil, and only cared for themselves. The new government that Prymont would encourage would be the complete opposite. It was natural that Prymontians would find their way on the other side of the Canamo Sea over the past few hundred years, and as such, these past nationals would especially be targeted. You can come back home now - or, home is coming back to you

International press were informed that this was purely a peacekeeping and humanitarian mission, with the USS Defender being fully loaded with necessities for basic human survival. Prymont were funding international aid for the first time since the creation of the United States - this was a landmark historic event. Meanwhile, Iverican forces already within The Hellenic Rus were told to just hold on tight; help would arrive soon. @Ahranaian forces would be advised to move towards the southern border, ready to push to Salonica and squeeze the city from beneath - a favour for Prymont helping in the current Operation Tremor. 

In total, four thousand Prymontian militants would be arriving in The Hellenic Rus very soon. It would only be a matter of time before both sides of the Canamo were blue.


OOC: You can check out the aircraft names I referenced here

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Posted (edited)

January 9, 2018- 0301 HRT

Highway N5, Convoy to Sarov

 

"Snowman 2, this is Actual. Ears out for new orders."

"Actual, this is 2. Send it."

"Snowman 2, Field Command has called in ordering that your platoon break off from this formation's current heading. Standby..."

"Roger so far, Actual..."

"Snowman 2, further, your platoon will break from the formation at a junction 2 clicks ahead and maintain a heading west along the N55 merger to Point on Grid Uniform-Juliet-750-520."

"I repeat, that is Point Uniform Juliet-750-520. Once at the Nav-point, conduct recce of surrounding structures until contact with Sarov Unit, callsign Pavlov. FieldCom will expect you on the horn once objective is complete. How Copy?"

"Snowman 2 copies. WILCO"

...

"Snowman 2, give me a full readback"

"f*ck."

"Say again, 2?"

"Disregard, Actual. Snowman 2 to break of at junction-"


0512 HRT

Valkka Mountain Foothills, 30 km West of Salonica

 

They found a man from Pavlov unit holed up in one of the buildings close to the Nav Point. He was half-conscious from blood loss and mumbling incoherently.

When they established comms with Field Command, they had been instructed to debrief him with express concern regarding the whereabouts of his company sized unit and the cargo they were supposed to be carrying.

When he finally came to, the details revealed did not bode well for the SO/AR unit.

Pavlov had been decimated in an ambush. There was now 5 metric tons of gold bullion at large.

Orders from command had been terse and clear: Find that bullion. Find it, before anyone else in the wasteland that was Hellenic Rus can put their grubby little mitts on it.


0515 HRT

Field Command Salonica

 

The masked man gripped the satphone tightly in his fist.

Pavlov, one of the best trained and most disciplined units was wiped out, their cargo at large. He knew it was a risk trusting the Sarov with a mission as hot as that. His orders from Corregidor were to avoid implicating the PMC-disguised SO/AR as much as possible, but now it became necessary. The Sarov couldn't fix this. That gold had to be found.

He let a long breath out and turned towards the map on his desk. His eyes fell on the Valkkan mountain range. It was up to SO/AR now to secure 210 Million standard units worth of metal previously kept by none other than the Bank of Salonica.

His eyes scanned northward on the map. At least there was some good news. Last night, the Sarov reported that the last 5 of the oil fields in the Point Kanamoi had been occupied. The local governments had promptly declared the legitimacy of the occupation after aid and protection were offered without the usual extortion tithes the other militants would often collect.

He let that thought satisfy him as he collected his sidearm and donned his plate-carrier. It was time to meet with some @Prymontian arrivals.


OOC Recap: The SO/AR are moving south to rendevouz with the USP forces. There's some trouble brewing with missing Gold. Sarov has occupied the majority of the oil field concentrations around that southern lip point in the Bay of Rus.

Edited by Iverica
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Port Sarov | 0656hrs
9th January 2018
Port Sarov
The Hellenic Rus

 

The USS Defender, escorted by a handful of Corvettes and transport ships, had docked mere moments ago at Port Sarov. Prymontian forces had already begun unloading the ship's cargo, bundling wooden crates into the backs of all-terrain vehicles. Lysstråles guarded the skies above, soaring over at low altitudes to serve a constant reminder of security. Back on the aircraft carrier, Sveverstråles were preparing for takeoff to join their aerial brothers. Currently, they were serving the purpose of securing local skies and eliminating any nearby threats. In the following days they would be used to take out opposing forces with ease, streamlining the trip to Salonica.

Port Sarov was a bustling hive of activity, which was all managed inside a large makeshift marquee set up by USP forces. Inside was Colonel Trym Nilsen, the longstanding commander of the 12th Infantry Brigade. Colonel Nilsen would be responsible for three hundred soldiers as they led the way towards the capital, paving the way for lower brigades who would establish infrastructure and take care of minor threats. His improvised office, a thin metal desk with a stiff chair surrounded by thin tarpaulin, was the head of operations. Colonel Nilsen was busying himself with the logistical side of proceedings - stock had to be taken off the ships, accounted for, and then delegated to groups for transportation. Usually this task would be given to a lower officer who had nothing better to do, but the colonel was slim on spare men. President Duval had been reluctant from the get-go to provide soldiers, and General Grey couldn't fully betray the trust of the hand that fed. Limited resources were available.

The atmosphere was tense within the tent. The entire land operation was being run on a tight budget, which wasn't helped when just metres away, the cocky naval boys were flaunting their ultramodern equipment. Meanwhile, Colonel Nilsen could only arm his men with second-hand rifles from the likes of Varinco (The Proper Choice); tactical gear was pulled straight from 2003, and any new equipment was quickly swiped up by the higher brigades. The Ground Force had always been given a narrow margin to operate within, which had been stretched to near breaking point in recent years. When Nilsen heard that he was being required to send troops to The Hellenic Rus, he'd thought the world had gone mad.

In a mad world, tough choices had to be made. With only three hundred men, those choices were made even tougher. Despite the prior assistance from the Sarov Resistance forces, the route to Salonica would not be a simple Sunday drive. Nilsen estimated that, with rest stops at major cities and landmarks, Prymontian troops would arrive comfortably at Salonica within two weeks. With whispered rumours of missing gold bullion floating around the camp, the ETA could be stretched out to a month. The truth was, Nilsen had no idea what he was getting in to. The Hellenic Russians had never been a simple bunch of people, and their territory had been carelessly ravaged in the apocalyptic-like times that followed the government's collapse. With civilised countries, it was relatively easy to predict what would happen and where. In the Canamo region, that was not the case.

Outside, Prymontian forces were trying their best to ignore the slightly intoxicated Sarov Resistance boys and get on with their jobs. There were thousands of Sarov fighters, who had swarmed the port upon Prymont's arrival with offers of help, liquor, and the odd woman. They'd done a good job in carrying out most of the grunt work and securing the lands within The Hellenic Rus, but the 12th Infantry Brigade couldn't help but notice that they weren't exactly... professional. By Nilsen's predictions, the tour could advance by mid-afternoon. The soldiers unpacking the ships hoped that it was sooner.

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January 16, 2018

Valkka Mountains 

 

The sun was out, there partially obscured by some intermittent cloud. Not that it made a difference, being ball-shrivelling cold even at the halfway point of the Velukha peak, nearly 4,000 metres above sea level.

Of course, 4,000 was looking a lot like 10,000 for the SO/AR  man, who hung from an ice sheet, suspended only by a pair of Ice Axes and a cable bolted in some 10 metres below.

His fireteam and the rest of the section followed close behind, humping the ice with every effort of carefully placed crampon (climbing spur for digging into the ice) and Ice Axe, carefully testing their next placement for any loose ice or snow shelves with light taps.

--

"Okay... Lluc, that's a sack of merde l'toro. You did not climb 4 kloms to the peak of some Mount Everlay-like thing to slit throats and defuse a nuclear warhead with a banana."

"Oh but we did", said Lluc, who sat with his feet propped up on the bar, smoking a fat Argonese cigar.

"...well at least without the nuke and Cavendish part", he said thoughtfully. The previous speaker, a Fuersas Reconomiento Marine, made a face and took another gulp of rum.

"Oh this merde is totes my-goates from a video game", said the something-teen Airborne try-hard to their right. "I remember playing this in Company of Duty, it was like- the coolest stuff, you play this Burlingtonian SASY operator named Shampoo-"

"Are you going to let me finish the story or what?", interrupted Lluc, exhaling a particularly large bloom of smoke.

"Puté, only if you keep buying 'migo", said the Marine, as he flipped his empty glass upside down on the bar.

"Okay, so as I was saying..."

--

...One of the fireteam almost ate the yellow snow when he didn't check carefully enough, his axe bit into a relatively solid snow shelf--but when he shifted his weight... the whole section gave in a shower of snow and frost as fine as baker's sugar.

He'd have fallen to his death, his bolt had been loosened by the amount of stuff that had come down on it.

The man would have splattered thousands of metres below had it not been for the quick thinking of the team leader.

Luckily, the handsome and macho Sargento Lluc D'Ayala had swung over to catch the guy--grabbing him by the outstretched hand just in time. But the brave and dashing Sargento D'Ayala was now hanging by one Ice Axe, and the blade was loosening quickl-

--

"OKAY! Cut that toro out. Just tell us what you were doing there."

Lluc shrugged, "fine, if you Lamecharcos don't want to hear a perfectly riveting tale likely to get me laid tonight--Lluc stopped to wink at the scantily-clad ladies in the other table who had been pretending not to listen in--then I'll tell you what we were there for."

He dropped his feet from the bar to lean in close to the two other servicemen.

"I merde you not when I say this. It was half. a dozen. tons. of Russkie. Gold. Bullion.", he whispered while at the same time, punctuating every word with a jab from the glowing head of his cigar.

"Okay. Puté io, I'm not hearing any more of this mer. Go home Lluc, you're drunk as a skunk", said the FUERECO Marine, grabbing his jacket and keys.

"Come on, kid", he said, gesturing to the young para-to-be. "Wouldn't want to get caught by any MPs--you'nt legal yet."

"Are you sure you're good to drive? You've had like 11 rums", said the boy.

"I'll eat some crayons in the car... also, I never drive sober"

"You're missing a good story!", shouted Lluc as the pair sauntered out the door.

The Marine gave a lazy wave, followed by the very confused other.

Lluc sighed and sipped his rum. He spun on his stool, turning to the two ladies in the nearby table.

"So have I mentioned the time I saved Dina Diva from the Derthaler Inquisition? Of course, it wasn't easy, nobody ever expects..."

--

As Lluc indulged the two lady's desire over exaggerated testosterone-injected tales of manly bravado and daring trysts of the Special Operator kind, the bartender--silent all this time--but steadily pouring on Lluc's tab, allowed himself a small grin. Afterall, he did have bills to pay. Whether he really did scale an ice sheet to recover half a dozen tons of Russian gold in the middle of a snowstorm and extracting through a harrowing snowmobile chase into a waiting chopper was anybody's guess. When the bar emptied later in the night, he would keep listening. So long as Lluc payed, he would pour and nod... pour and nod.


In reality, the operation had gone down in a manner similar to the drunken boasts of one Cabo Lluc D'Ayala of the SO/AR section tasked with the survey. Unfortunately, records state that the Cabo had been out of action by a terrible case of dysentery from eating some off-colour ethnic delicacy.

The units tasked with the retrieval did have to climb a mountain, but it was only about 3,000 metres in height, and only had to climb with ice axe for roughly 20 metres during the op. Then after, the survey unit did not engage the insurgent facility, which was, by the way--on an adjacent mesa within its cave network. The team had in fact only provided mapping and topographical analysis for viable ingress and egress. They did not engage in the ensuing combat as the distance (well over 3,682 metres) far surpassed that of their small arms loadout. The team simply provided laser designation for an airstrike or two before promptly packing up for the long trek down...

A unit deployed via rotor had been sent in to extract the objective, and luckily enjoyed the bulk of brownie points, receiving in no small order, some expedited journey through the ranks from a pleased CO's recommendation.

But of course, these records are sealed in some dusty safe beneath Corregidor High Command--and maybe... just maybe--don't hold the full picture of the action that day in the Valkkan Mountains.

Edited by Iverica
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Highway E8 | 1809hrs
11th January 2018
Langepas
The Hellenic Rus

 

The winters in north Argis were often bitterly cold, and this one was no different. One would be given odd looks if they were to describe blizzards as calm, but that was exactly what this one was. While the windscreen wipers on the trucks worked overtime to clear the snow, the outside world was eerily quiet. The usual noises of the Hellenic Russian countryside were now blanketed by the thick layer of crisp powder, providing a tranquil but dangerous trip along a deserted highway. The subzero temperatures allowed the snow to settle, making the edge of the road impossible to tell apart from the ditch at the side. As a safety precaution, the convoy was forced to travel at a meagre 40 miles per hour.

As the flurry continued to fall, so did the mood in the back of one of the trucks. The thin tarpaulin hastily thrown over the otherwise exposed rear offered no protection against the harsh, numbing weather, the soldiers huddled together in a pathetic attempt to keep warm. Their cheeks were flushed, their hands blue, but their spirits remained... low. They'd been promised the chance to expand the motherland and exercise their true force, but so far, they'd set up a few tents in the rain at some docks and sat in the back of a van with a rickety suspension. Every bump, every pothole, exacerbated the pain in their backs, which was only a problem because of the metal benches they were sat on. While Prymont's Air Force and Navy soared into the future, the Ground Forces were left in the 1980s.

US%20Army%20Truck.jpg

One man offered around the last of his packet of Jack Player Specials, a shaking hand making it incredibly hard to accept his offering. Once the cigarettes had been taken, they were placed between chattering teeth and icy blue lips, lit by a lighter that often submitted to the wind. Even the small pleasures of life couldn't be enjoyed easily. Their smoke filled the crisp air, easing their minds as they ploughed on. The convoy had been travelling for two days straight now, switching drivers now and then to maintain a constant trajectory. The soldiers in the back had lost track of time. All they had to go by were the empty cigarette packets that littered the floor. 

 

Up ahead, a small Lysstråle pack were closing in on a target. Aerial imagery from the Soniskstråle runs had shown that an unidentified band of rogues were transporting what was presumed to be a @Variotan Varinco missile. Over the past twenty four hours, it had been tracked to the coastline of the Gulf of Rus, presumably to be aimed towards the United States' shoreline. Intelligence had hinted towards the possibility that they were remnants of the Circle of Death, and while there was no solid proof, it was better to be safe than sorry. If that wasn't the case, it would be a simple propaganda task of informing the general public that the Hellenic Russian military had done it. After all, they were to be the perfect scapegoats for any future 'incidents'. 

Three jets, each loaded with four guided missiles, now rocketed above the target. Only one would carry out the deed - the remaining two were an insurance policy, or spectators to the grand event. 

"Alpha Seven, this is Lima Sierra One. Target has been located. Requesting permission to proceed with orders."

"Lima Sierra One, this is Alpha Seven. Permission to proceed with orders granted. Repeat, permission granted."

"Copy that Alpha Seven." 

With the click of a button, two missiles were pointed downwards and fired up. They screamed towards the target, the group of eight rogues standing no chance. The on-board night vision camera showed a cloud of smoke and debris encompassing the site. 

"Alpha Seven, this is Lima Sierra One. Target has been destroyed. Returning to Defender."

 


Luftjok Castle | 2215hrs
11th January 2018

Lake Luftjok
Wildenesse

 

Deep within the ancient walls of Luftjok Castle resided Prymont's most evil. Currently, he was making his way through the cold stone corridors, wandering the maze that led to his private quarters. He was leaving a banquet that would make medieval royals jealous, to enjoy the rest of the night with finely selected mistresses. Some would find it revolting that he was accompanied by his wife, but she had long accepted it as part of their marriage. She was too rich to care, anyway.

1024px-Bled_(1283981833).jpg

The latest kPhone, plated in 24 carat gold, vibrated from within his pocket, emitting a jolly jingle. With a disgruntled groan the man reached inside, bringing the phone to his ear.

"..."

"Hello? Varg?"

"Who's speaking?"

"It's Hunter."

"... The name means nothing to me."

"Hunter Grey. Defence Minister." Varg let out another groan, this one deeper and longer. How had a government minister got hold of his phone number?

"I have a proposition for you. Can you meet me tomorrow in New Halsham? I want to make you a very rich man."

"I'm already rich."

"I'll make you a powerful man."

"I'm already powerful."

"... Then I can make you the President." Varg paused mid-stride, his brow furrowed in confusion. 

"You come to me. Wahl's Coffee Shop. Canastota. Tomorrow, noon."

The line went dead.

 

 

 

Edited by Prymont
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Wahl's Coffee Shop | 1159hrs
12th January 2018
Canastota
Ostport

 

Hunter Grey stomped his feet on the door mat as he entered Wahl's Coffee Shop, the snow falling from his boots. He'd only walked two metres from the government vehicle that dropped him off outside the café, but the snow was so heavy it was like walking for miles in Antargis. The old man rubbed his hands together, embracing the comforting warmth of the high-end coffee shop. It was immediately obvious why Varg had picked here over anywhere else - it was expensive. 

Light classical music played softly from hidden speakers, enhancing the upper class atmosphere. Grey approached the counter at the side of the store, delicately removing his leather gloves as his eyes darted over the variety of cakes and sweet treats in the glass cabinet. A spirited young waitress greeted him, her apron oddly pristine for a food environment. 

"Ah... a cappuccino. Medium."

"And where are you sitting today, sir?"

"I'll wait here."

Hunter stood to the side of the counter as the barista worked her magic. Vintage coffee machines let out high pressure steam, which was quickly whisked away by a tricky air ventilation system. As he waited, Grey took the time to observe his surroundings, keeping an eye out for a certain flamboyant someone. He spotted his target soon enough; an ageing man, hidden behind a broadsheet newspaper, was sat in the corner of the bar. Grey craned his neck slightly, trying to peer around the telegraph that encapsulated the mobster. Luxurious leather evening shoes flowed freely onto white chinos, with a light pink sweater completing a gentle yet rich look. Deep brown eyes were hidden behind designer sunglasses, his salt and pepper hair slicked back with copious amounts of gel. This was Varg Alme.

The barista interrupted Hunter's observation, handing him his coffee. Money was handed over, with the waitress keeping a generous tip, and Grey strode over. As he took a seat, Varg lowered the papers before him, making a dramatic show of flicking his wrist, peering down his nose at his watch, and scoffing at the Defence Minister's tardiness.

"You're late."

"I had to get my coffee."

"Arrive earlier." The minister took a deep breath, biting his tongue to prevent him from saying anything unsavoury. While he held an official government position, Varg was much more powerful than him. Upsetting this man would never end well - as had been seen recently in the news, with the deaths of three teenagers for drug debt owed to the Isbrytere.

"Tell me then, Hunter. Why am I here?"

"I'd prefer if we could discuss this somewhere more private."

"People here know better than to talk. You have my attention. Use it."

Hunter reached into his briefcase, withdrawing a plain yellow folder and sliding it across the table. "I won't say much here, but that file has everything you need to know. I trust you're aware of our... activities, in The Hellenic Rus?"

"Humanitarian aid? From Prymont? Who are you trying to kid?"

"It's a good diplomatic cover. We can't exactly go out there and say we're invading a broken country, can we?"

"What has this got to do with me? Is Duval resigning?" 

"Not exactly... he doesn't know the plan yet." Grey took another sip of his coffee, glancing up at his guest as he awaited an interruption. Nothing came. "Well, our Ground Forces are severely underfunded, and we're asking a lot from them. It'll be hard for international radar to ignore our aerial activity in the region. Questions will be asked, flimsy answers will be given. We need someone to step up when Duval takes the fall."

"You're scapegoating him. Does he know about this?"

"Naturally, no. He doesn't particularly approve of the invasion either. You see, Duval is weak. You can bend him whatever way you want, and there's barely any resistance. The negative stigma that he sees of invading The Hellenic Rus is quickly surpassed by the positive consequences of helping to restructure a broken country."

"You take me for a very stupid man, Hunter. Cut to the chase."

The Defence Minister shifted uneasily in his seat, looking around to make sure they weren't being listened in on. The cloaked figure leaned forwards, lowering his voice to barely a whisper. "We can't invade a country with no backlash. There are two million people that we'll be taking in as our own. It's an offensive move, and it won't be received well in the international community. When threats are made, Duval will take the fall. I'm offering you the opportunity to replace him. Think of your image - the people will love you when they find out you're the man helping to repair The Hellenic Rus! Plus, you have the leadership experience. Just give me the chance to get you involved politically, and we can make it happen."

"Why me? What do you get from this?"

"I can't be President. I like what I'm doing now. I don't trust anyone else in this job. But you... we can work together, Varg. You live in that bloody castle because you're scared of being caught. When you're running the country, nobody can catch you. You have the brains, I have the manpower. We can make Prymont great again."

Edited by Prymont
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Town Square | 0840hrs
15th January 2018
Pokrovsk
The Hellenic Rus

 

The 12th Infantry Brigade had arrived at Pokrovsk at dawn, and were immediately overwhelmed by the struggling citizens wanting food, shelter, and medicine. As the trucks rolled up in the town square, thousands of diseased, malnourished Hellenic Russians mobbed the convoy, pushing and shoving to get to the front so they could get a handful of bread and a cardigan. Quickly, the Ground Forces realised that they were severely unprepared and called for the Air Force to drop extra supply packages a few miles down the road so they could be picked up and distributed. The rush had started almost two hours earlier, and was showing no signs of dying down.

It was fair to say that every single citizen within these borders had been massively let down by their government. When the Circle of Death firebombed the governmental buildings in Salonica, politicians and public servants fled to central Argis, seeking shelter and safety in @Ahrana, @Girkmand, @The Eurofuhrer and @Greater Serbia. They left little behind, and that was quickly gobbled up by the terrorists. What was left for the people was crumbs; barely enough to last the rest of the day. Imports were cut off by the naval blockade established by the USP Navy, and air and ground cargo refused to enter an unstable country. Thus, the people had turned to primitive times, fighting for homegrown foodstuffs and trying to establish their own hierarchies (which were doomed to fail from the beginning). The USP aid was the first external contact they'd had in weeks, and while they were extremely grateful for the help, they didn't go about showing it in the best way.

People fought in the crowds to get closer to the trucks. Paramedics were unable to reach the fallen as the masses couldn't be penetrated. The lives of some were ended by those that had stronger bodies and more willpower to surge to the front and continue living. When the trucks inevitably ran out of supplies, the crowd turned on their helpers. Vehicles were overturned, Molotov cocktails were launched, and punches were thrown. Gunshots fired into the air in an attempt to disperse the crowds went unnoticed. Despite Colonel Nilsen's orders to remain peaceful, the guns turned horizontal and were fired directly into the horde. Soon enough, there were more people fallen than standing, and the few that remained quickly left when the tanks finally arrived. 

What was meant to be a humanitarian aid mission had quickly dissolved into a war crime. 

The first thought that crossed Colonel Nilsen's mind was where to hide the bodies.

Mass graves were quickly dug out on the edges of the town. Hundreds, most likely thousands of bodies were thrown into the backs of trucks and dumped into the dirt, hiding the cruel reality of what had happened. In the media at home, it was reported that the military had stumbled upon thousands of dead bodies, thought to be a result of disease and starvation, and they were humanely disposed of. Soldiers were blackmailed into keeping their lips tightly shut - if President Duval caught wind of what'd really gone down, he'd call the operation off entirely. He already disapproved of what his men were doing here. Learning the reality of what they were doing would send him into madness.

By mid-afternoon, the dead were taken care of and reinforcements had arrived. The town square was restructured into a hub of operations, from which Pokrovsk would be rebuilt. Food, water, building materials, clothing and medicinal supplies would now arrive regularly, and would be fairly and equally handed out by the USP soldiers. Tanks would escort troops around the town, patrolling the area for misconduct and swiftly rectifying it. Locals would speak in their mother-tongue around their 'saviours', and developed code names to warn others of when they were coming. They hid in the shadows, squirming in fear at the mere sight of the Prymontian military uniform. Their day had turned from a blessing to a massacre, and the people wouldn't quickly forget that.

But so what? Who cared if their brothers, sisters, parents and children had been wrongly slaughtered by trigger-happy brutes? They were being looked after now. Their homes were being rebuilt. Routine and normality was returning to their lives. Prymont had saved the day.

Edited by Prymont
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Varg Alme was always destined for great things, even if they were on the wrong side of the law. Growing up in the Prymont Republic in the late 60s and early 70s, a little Varg grew a granite-like shell. He was impenetrable from a young age, always casting steely glances and managing backroom deals. Little is known about his formative years, other than in school, he ran a very successful snack business during lunchtimes that pocketed him roughly ß30,000 in his senior year, his food empire spanning over almost one hundred schools across the state. He opted out of further and higher education, instead pursuing an education of different sorts - of how to survive dark alleyway stabbings, and how to broker multi-million Prynd deals with the slimiest of drug dealers. By his early twenties, even the @Variotan dealers feared him.

Come 1977, and Varg was introduced to the Menchaca family of @Iverica. It was during a standard business trip to Manille, one that would lay out the plan for somewhat legal car imports. The Menchaca family were well known in the trade world, and had learned many useful but questionable ways to avoid tax and get what you wanted on the cheap. Varg quickly came to learn that they'd be useful assets, especially in such an opportunistic country as Iverica. Establishing strong ties with them would be vital to lining his pockets with green for many years to come. And so, when the opportunity arose to integrate into their family and inherit their wealth, the sly Prymontian didn't hesitate.

Even if it did mean marrying a thirteen year old.

Blanca Menchaca was the only child in the family, thanks to her father's comically low sperm count, which had been publicly exposed when his warehouse was raided the year prior and sensitive documents were sold to tabloids for extortionate amounts. The girl had been mollycoddled her entire life, kept safe in the guarded compound that the Menchacas resided in, nestled deep within the lush Iverican countryside. Her childhood was spent with a tutor, learning with ease what those twice her age would struggle with. To say that Blanca was gifted would be a criminal understatement - but, in short, she knew her sh*t. However, she did grow up a daddy's girl, and would do whatever he said. If that meant marrying a charming Prymontian with lots and lots of money, who was she to protest?

Her husband would quickly learn that she wasn't to be manipulated. In turn, she quickly learned that there was more to Varg than met the eye, and the two grew very close organically. Upon his return to Prymont with a young teen latched to his side, the press started asking questions. One brave reporter dared to venture to the Alme residence, in the hopes of spying on the inhabitants and snapping a few exclusive photographs for his bosses. The questions quickly stopped when the reporter went missing, and a few days later, body parts were found in rivers across the country. It was rumoured that the journalist's head was delivered to the chief editor of the press organisation on a silver platter, although this hasn't been confirmed. 
As Varg and Blanca grew ever closer, naturally she fell pregnant at fifteen. When Blanca was seen in public with an obvious baby bump, politicians were pressed to intervene and accuse Alme of the unspeakable. Politicians are weak folk however, and were quickly bent any which way Varg wanted when he flashed some cash before their eyes. Their first child arrived nine months later, a baby girl in perfect health, born to two very proud parents. A brother followed a couple of years later, and then another daughter, before the couple decided to refocus on their business.

Varg's family tree grew with his crime empire. The Isbrytere earned their name in the mid-1980s, with the higher-ups wanting to take credit for their best work when it was reported in the media. The name also offered organisation and structure, allowing the money to flow even faster, and the whip to crack even harder when people stepped out of line. If there was one thing that Varg was good at, it was punishment. Rats that ran to the press were quickly poisoned of, sometimes with rat poison, other times by a very sad, inconvenient car crash which oddly left the victim with a body full of holes shaped just like bullets. Those that followed Alme's every word were subsequently rewarded, often receiving yachts and flashy watches. 

The late 80s were a breeze for Varg and Blanca. While he dealt more with the deals and transportation, she focused on human resources. It was surprising how easily men would do as you said when you flashed a bit of skin and fluttered your eyelashes. Despite their romantic interests, Varg and Blanca both understood that business came first, and acted accordingly. Thus, their empire grew exponentially, covering from the far reaches of @Orioni and @Adaptus to troubled socialists closer to home, such as @Girkmand and @Greater Serbia. However, their reign of terror over Prymont wouldn't last forever. Upon the formation of the United States in 1995, the government finally cracked down on the Isbrytere, targeting them directly where it hurt - right at the helm. Arrest warrants were issued for Varg and Blanca Alme, with their children being offered immunity if they handed them in. They were raised better than that, undoubtedly, but that didn't stop their parents from fleeing to the safety of @St Francoisbourg, who's laws prevented those residing within their borders from being deported, even if they were the most vile, filthy scum on the entire planet. 

With them, they took their newborn child, a certain Emrik Alme. Born in 1993, Emrik was raised in the lap of luxury, having free roam of a penthouse suite in Saint Preux. They weren't exactly sure why, but Varg and Blanca felt compelled to teach Emrik everything they knew and more, moulding him into a life which would see him one day replace them at the top of Prymont's most elite. And although they weren't at home to oversee their orders, his parents would run the family business from the comfort of St Francoisburg, thanks to the internet and mobile phones. It was probably because of his upbringing in the home of the rich and tax-free that Emrik was better cut out for running the shop, while his older siblings would get stuck into the nitty gritty and get their hands dirty. 

Growing up with money meant that, while he was sensible with his spending, Emrik knew how to have fun. It would be many more years before he would be asked to settle down and help run the Isbrytere, so he spent his teenage years as any teen would want - surrounding himself with fast cars, hot women and pure cocaine. While he was out there enjoying himself, Varg and Blanca returned to Prymont on the low down. Purchasing an ancient castle in the middle of nowhere helped them to remain secluded and alone, running their operations in peace. The eradication of communism only boosted their profits, and with more money than they knew what to do with, they were set for life.

A spanner was thrown in the works in 2018, when a certain Defence Minister approached Varg with a ludicrous offer. His engineered invasion of The Hellenic Rus was almost designed to go wrong, leaving President Duval as the perfect scapegoat. General Grey had always thought of Duval as being slow, boring, and generally a crappy leader. General Grey also knew that Varg Alme was absolutely f*cking loaded, and his eyes lit up when he realised that, if he played his cards right, he could dip his hands into that sweet, sticky pot of Alme gold. 

Varg saw this as an opportunity. As President, every last Prymontian would be in the palm of his hand - officially this time. It was what he'd always wanted! It was a chance to cement the Isbrytere into the backbone of the United States, weaving them into the very fabric that ran the country. And, as President, who could stop him? Times were changing for the Alme family. Varg would let Grey do what he needed to do, implementing him as a politician and setting him up to eventually replace Duval. In turn, he'd do the same for his son - Emrik was called back home from a lavish holiday in @Magnaeus to calm him down and set him up to take over from his father. Varg had let him off his leash for too long. The boy had potential, and he needed to utilise it. 

Edited by Prymont
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Kedrovy | 0555hrs
21st January 2018
6 miles east of Salonica
The Hellenic Rus

 

"Yes Colonel, the intel provided from the @Iverica SO/AR units match up with our own aerial reconnaissance imagery. Highway E2 into Salonica is clear for penetration."

"And the rest of the city?"

"Right now, that's unclear. We're awaiting on the Ivericans to rendezvous with us for further information before proceeding with planning. The only thing we're certain on is the east entrance."

"So we wait for them. How long until they arrive?"

"Last we heard, they were fifteen minutes away. They're travelling by land, so I believe they're taking their time to avoid any IEDs."

"Good. Get the camp ready for them." Colonel Nilsen sent the soldier on his way, quickly returning to the papers on his desk. The brigade had made good progress since arriving at Port Sarov, and had spread aid and safety across several major towns along the way. With funding from the government, the people of The Hellenic Rus were now regularly receiving food and medicine. Construction workers had been drafted in to rebuild homes and community centres to reinstate structure and normality, and even nurses and doctors from the United States had been flown over to staff the hospitals. Generally, their Canamo neighbours were welcoming and receptive, and were eager to integrate into the Prymontian way. 

The only issue was Pokrovsk. That had been a complete disaster, but the less said about that the better. The men involved had been disciplined accordingly, but there was no way of telling whether the locals would eventually warm up to the Prymontians after what had happened. At best, it'd be a town with strained relations to the capital. At worst, they'd rise against their assailants and cause more trouble than they were worth. Propaganda would only do so much. Their memories weren't short.

Once arriving at Kedrovy, the last stop before Salonica, the remainder of the supplies had been spent establishing a sizeable camp. This would be used as the HQ for the Salonica takeover, and would be where Elite Prymontian Defence Force soldiers would be landing in a couple of days time. Resistance was to be expected in Salonica, despite the best efforts of the Ivericans, and the standard Ground Forces could only do so much. Such a huge undertaking would require the big guns.

Camp Kedrovy had been established on the outskirts of the town. It was surrounded by a simple wire fence, with barbed wire here and there - they'd quickly realised when arming the fort that they were comically short on defence measures, and had to make do. As such, tanks and cannons were set up around the perimeter, warding off any terrorists and brave citizens. To any regular, educated person, it'd be obvious how desperately underfunded the USPGF were, but thankfully the terrorists who thought sending suicide bombers around the country and subsequently losing members was a good idea were short on brain cells. But, they did have guns and fingers to pull the triggers, and so a defence had to be made.

Air units were slowly moving in from Port Sarov. Their time in the land of napalm, terrorism and general discourse had been easy and slow, but now they were actually required for assistance. A nearby abandoned aerodrome had been secured by Sarov Resistance militia and was being utilised to store the planes until they were needed. For now, they lay in waiting, fuel tanks full and armed to the teeth, ready to unleash all hell on an already slaughtered city. 

 

Captain Moore approached the barrier at the checkpoint, raising his binoculars and peering towards the horizon in search of their inbound western friends. His blue, numbed hands shook violently, the air icy and thin from the constant snowfall which had subsided in the past few hours. He cursed whoever thought it was a good idea to invade in the middle of the worst bloody winter in years. Lowering the binoculars, he joined a guard in the metal shelter of the checkpoint, taking shelter from the biting wind. The guard was armed with a semi-automatic rifle and a radio, which probably didn't work due to the weather. He'd spent his time twiddling his thumbs and smoking cigarettes, occasionally looking up for visitors. 

"There are some guys due soon, about ten minutes or so. They're SO/AR. Check their ID and let them in."

"What are they for?"

"They're bringing cheese sandwiches and orange juice."

"Really? SO/AR are bringing that?"

"Ask stupid questions, get stupid answers. They're helping us with Salonica."

"We're actually going ahead with that?"

"Yeah, why wouldn't we?" Moore regarded the man with confusion, wondering why there was such scepticism. Salonica had always been part of the plan.

"Dunno, there was talk of the Defence Minister calling it off because of some... I don't know, someone mentioned some sh*t going down and it might reach Duval."

"No. Everything has been fine. It'll be a piece of cake." His words oozed confidence, but deep within, Moore knew that they were f*cked.

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