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Ulfheimr´s Demise: Ragnarök

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  |Part 1: Fimbulvetr

[OOC: Imagine Star Wars the Clone war narrators Voice!]

What happend Until now:

Ulfheimr, the barbaric isolationist nation to the south, threatens Nyantastani sovereignty after dropping Napalm bombs close to the border and causing fires that spread onto Nyantastani soil. Nyantastan immediately mobilized its armed forces and deployed them closer to the border while attempting to resolve the situation diplomatically. 

These actions were fruitless, and Ulfheimr escalated tensions further. On July 25th 2022 Ulfheimerian Terrorist Massacred Civilians in Gotneska furthering Tensions in the Region. With this the Goal was Set for an Invasion and Plans were drawn for Operation Jormungandr. Nyantastan couldn't stand having a neighbor this threatening between it and its allies. Something had to be done. While tensions rose, the allies of Nyantastan didn't sit Idly by. Tagmatium moved one of its aircraft carriers in to the Region to support Nyantastan. This aircraft carrier who was later withdrawn to a different conflict served as a neutral meeting ground for @Iverican and Nyantastani General Staff discussing the upcoming war. With troop exercises, extensive training and the redeployment of troops and logistics it became quiet on the border. But this only supported a surprise attack on Ulfheimr. With their arrogance, they were surly mistaken all of this as an Empty thread. But they would regret their ignorance.  

Everything had lead to this. Preparations were complete. It was time for one last meeting. 




02 Second of July, 2022

Nyantastan-Ulfheimr Border

The military base is in a tense mess. The special forces are already on the airbases waiting for the order to deploy. The helicopters are warming up. Soldiers run around and prepare for what is ahead of them. Ammunition and fuel is carried through the area in a hurry so that everyone is supplied.  Meanwhile, Akamura steps out of the helicopter that brought him here. His white military uniform reflects the light of the spotlights, the night rain is largely kept off by his cap, and with determined steps the commander-in-chief moves towards the barracks of the generals. Entering the meeting room, he is greeted by a number of generals with a nod of the head. The generals of the Iverican forces are also here to discuss the final steps. The operation will begin at 0115hrs. Several maps lie on the tables or hang on the walls, the room is filled with smoke as the commander-in-chief takes a seat next to his field marshal. 

Everything goes as planned. Ulfheimr should not have the slightest idea since the largest troop movements have long since been completed. Months of waiting and preparation have led to this moment. Over the radio the first air bases announce that they are ready while the generals go through the movements of the ground troops for the last time. From outside you can hear the sound of rotors and engines. Soon the symphony of battle will sound and the end of Ulfheimr will be heralded. The last details are discussed while Akamura and the general staff have a lively exchange and the next round of scouts gets ready to observe the situation in Ulfheimr. The smallest change is immediately transmitted to react at any time. 



02 Second of July,2022


Airbase Valkyrie 25km from Border

The Engiens of the SA-21E Voltor start to roar and the aircraft starts to move down the runway. The first AWAC aircraft take off to provide aerial reconnaissance. Meanwhile, the Einherjar and Queen Ranger Wing check their equipment one last time before taking off. Their mission is to occupy key landing fields and radar/communications stations to blind and deafen the enemy.



02 Second of July,2022

Nyantastan-Ulfheimr Border

After the meeting was completed and the plans that had been refined and adjusted since the meeting on the carrier were approved one last time. A large part of the force gathered in front of their general staff and it was time for a heroically cheesy speech to motivate the troops. This is of course also transmitted over the radio. "Soldiers! Brothers and sisters. Today we will do the wurld a great favor. We will not only liberate the people of Ulfheimr and save them from their fate. No! We will also wipe this stain of human contempt off the map forever! It is time that we go ashore and restore law and order. We will not accept failure, we will not fight for Nyantastan today, no we will fight for the wurld! Fight, for the badge you wear! Your country needs your devoted pride! Now wave your honor high! The divide has broken tides!The demand has come to ask for your guiding hands! Lets Drive these Animals out of there Holes and Burry them six feet below!

United We Stand!"

The soldiers shout back "Divided we fall!"

Akamura turns to his field marshal "Do not disappoint me Sterling. It's time we made Ulfheimr pay once and for all."

( @Iverica)

Edited by Nyanta (see edit history)
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01 JUL 2022 | 2245 Zebra (Zulu) Time

FOB Sant Miquel, Nyantastani Border



It was dark at Forward Operating Base Sant Miquel, where the Iverican Army Regimental Combat Team quartered and awaiting 0-hour. The quickly dimming night was coming. Along with it, a heavy chill followed, nipping far more sharply than it should have for the time of year. 


The FOB was at the saddle between 2 hills which had appeared ideal at first as it would offer a modicum of protection from wind and any low-angle fire. Unfortunately for the Ivericans, the wind shifted just before dusk, letting in a constant ever-numbing draft which vented into and through their position. The men looked on enviously at the Nyantastani rear echelon units nestled comfortably below, further protected from the windchill.


Around the base, men donned windbreaker shells and brewed steaming pots of caffeine and tea under the dim red glow of low-visibility lamps. RCT Command had deemed their emissions control a priority so close to the border and had absolutely banned the use of white lights outdoors and in structures with any unshielded openings. Likewise, the smoking of anything that gave off a visible glow was prohibited and the igniting of such items was harshly punished by roving bands of MPs which prowled along shadowly lanes. As a result, men in sour moods occasionally stumbled over loose ammunition boxes, tires, or track segments. It also didn't help that command received word from their Nyantastani allies that 0-hour was soon to be expected; causing RCT Command to issue a notice expecting Readiness Condition 2* within 6 hours. It meant that everyone in the base had to complete pre-combat checks, be mounted up with weapons at condition 1, and be ready to roll at the receipt of a 15-minute notice. Given that items were still missing from the checklists, complete readiness in just 6 hours was laughable. 

*REDCON 2: Equipment stowed, precombat checks complete. All personnel alert and mounted in vehicles; weapons manned & charged, round in chamber, weapon on safe. All (100 percent) digital and FM communications links operational. Status reports submitted in accordance with task force SOP. Company team is ready to move within 15 minutes of notification.


The cold, the lack of nicotine, the high-strung MPs, and the closing deadlines had everyone on a sudden edge- in stark contrast to the boredom the units had been feeling for the past 2 months. It also didn't help that RCT Command was asking for a miracle. REDCON 2 in 6 hours? The expectation had everyone at company command levels and below scrambling in a futile rush. Captains, junior officers, NCOs and lowly enlisted bustled around, trying to falsify or loophole pre-combat checklists despite missing items. Indeed, LOGPAC* and CSS* units were still reporting missing items which had been expected from their Main Operating Base 72 Hours ago. Several containers worth of vehicle parts, machine fluids, and electronics inexplicably missed their delivery schedule.

*LOGistics PACkage and Combat Service Support


In this dim chaos of work stress and pre-deployment anxiety, many crews milled about their vehicles, trying to find workarounds for non-functional or missing equipment. Perhaps most frustrated among them were the tank crews of the 43rd Regiment, 4th Brigade of Cuirassiers, 2nd Division of Horse Grenadiers.



UC-42 Léon, Main Battle Tank




The commander's hatch of the UC-42-A2 Léon slammed open with a clang. An officer lifted himself up and out with his arms braced on the rim of the cupola. He went over the right side of the turret, dropped onto the flank deck of the hull and then plopped onto the dirt below.


Sighing, he searched the many pockets of his tanker's battledress single-suit for his smoke pouch. From above him, the clang of the gunner's hatch opening sounded, followed by the muffled curse of the gunner, one Sargento Palvaen "Pal" Saxweiro. From the sound of it, the young gunner had chaffed his palm on the rough hematite coating. Pal rubbed his open palm as he walked over to join the officer, who was now leaning back against the right-side applique armour skirt and pouring what little tobacco remained into a short briar pipe. Both men could only vaguely see each other in the dim red glow of a small low-vis lamp setup beneath an adjacent camouflage tent.


The officer motioned for Pal to cover him as he discreetly lit the compact billiard-shaped bowl from behind Pal's body. He quickly slipped a perforated cap onto the pipe to hide the chamber's glow. He swapped places and covered his gunner, who did the same with his modest clay pipe. Out of tobacco, the young sergeant ripped a cigarillo open and used the flaking contents to fill his clay piece. Unlike his commander, Pal used a cap cover improvised from the base of a .50 cartridge's spent casing.


The officer, a tall, wiry man in his late 20's had dark rings under his eyes. His Lieutenant's epaulette had a streak of engine oil on it and his dark hair was mussed and unkempt. The only proper about him was his facial hair, which was trimmed clean on his tanned features lest he face the consequences of a breached grooming standard. Pal was much the same way, albeit skinnier and much shorter. His rust-red hair was greasy and matted atop his paler Narvic features.


Both men smoked on in silence, listening to the ambient noises of V8 engines being tested, ratchets and socket wrenches being worked, and men milling about in a rush to stow essential equipment. The 2 had an easy familiarity about them. The officer leaned back, shoulder-to-shoulder with the short junior sergeant. They had their feet braced in the dirt and backs against the firm steel skirts of their tank, their armoured home, so-named Battle Cat by the stencil on their gun barrel and a small sketch of the eponymous sidekick feline from the '80s cartoon, She-Man*. Though notably, this version of Battle Cat came with D-Cups and a suggestive pose.

*A decidedly more progressive take on Narvic Barbarian tropes, She-Man was banned by a lot of networks before finally being allowed to air in 1989. This media attention and Karen-induced backlash just made it all the more appealing for children to watch. In those days, watching She-Man was a requirement to be in counter-culture circles.


Battle Cat was the lead tank of the 4 in their Lance, itself 1 of 3 MBT Lances* of 2nd Company or 2-COY. Of her sister tanks, she was the eldest, being a former A1. She was converted from one of the very first Léons to roll off the Paseo Tank Plant finishing yards in Nou Stille. About 14 years old now, Battle Cat was a remnant calling back to the previous generation of Exersito Tankers. The age gap was apparent in the styled names each tank in 2-COY had. Unlike Battle Cat, the rest of the company were all brand new A2s from Llarunas Arsenal in Léon. Their crews were the first to have them, meaning that, unlike Battle Cat's current second-gen crew, the youngsters got to name them.

*A "Lance" or Lanssa (Iverican) is a term that refers to a tactical unit of 2-5 armoured vehicles. It is equatable to the more internationally used "Tank Platoon".


Going around 2-COY's motor pool yard there was "Boy Band", so named for the crew- none of whom were over the age of 21. Beside Boy Band was Stranger Danger which sported a stencil of an ominous plain white van on the turret flank. Driving in from the depot just now, the "Papa's Belt" rejoined the company. Several belt buckles clinked as the tank drove by, swinging from leather belts wrapped around the girth of the main gun. On the mantlet, jut behind the belts, a pair of raised buttock cheeks had been painted-on. Papa's Belt belonged to Padre Pio, a nickname for Capitan Piolo Urdaneta-Berenguer, rumoured disgraced seminarian and 2-COY's CO.


Beside Battle Cat, the crew of "Fun For All Ages" was rushing to complete engine maintenance, struggling with the complex second generation cooling system which shrowded the tank's 1,200 Horsepower V8. An empty slot near a corner of the yard was for "1-800 Get Some Help", which was still en route back from getting her breech stress-checked at the closest gunnery range. Right in front of Battle Cat was "Must Be This Tall to DIE" which had an amusement park height ruler drawn from the side of the turret down to the skirt armour. Still others like How's My Driving?, The Love Shack, Free Ice Cream, Love From Ivy, Babes Ride 4 Free, Legally Blind, Boom & Coom, and Tinnitus Guaranteed were in similar states of rushed preparation. The names were all Anglish translations from various Iberic slogans, pop-culture references, and bumper stickers. Battle Cat had clearly been named and lovingly cared for by a previous crew of '80s and 90's kids whereas all the newer tanks with their zoomer crews edged closer to being "dank" and "based".


The pair's silent observation of the 2-COY vehicles was interrupted by the sound of motor pool dirt crunching from behind the tank. Uniformed similarly with a far cleaner single-suit was their driver. Fresh out of high school, Soldado Tecnico Franco Loupes awkwardly carried 3 bundled MRE pouches by their tops, trying to keep the steaming contents of flamelessly heated water from scalding him. It looked like the mess crews had indeed closed the kitchens. Can't have any dirty pots to scrub if the RCT was preparing for REDCON 2.


"H-hey uh, L-T. I got the-", the poor lad started.


All of a sudden, Pal got up from leaning against the Cat and tapped the still smouldering tobacco out of his clay. 


"Sorry, what the fuck did you say?", asked the short sergeant, getting in the face of the driver who had about half a foot on the gunner.


"I-uh prepped some food-", Loupes stuttered. Despite their height, Pal's ferocity often cowed the new addition to their crew, who recently replaced a driver that both other crewmen had known since their training on the flats*.

*The Léon Flats are often used as training grounds for Exersito armoured units.


"No-no-no. L-T? What the fuck are you, Anglian? Boy, you better straighten your shit out. That is Teniente to you, pútero. Teniente Primo Serrat- this crew's saviour-damned top. In case you hadn't noticed, this is the momma-banging Exersito Iverica, noio, you copy me?"


The MRE bags in Loupes' hands shook. His eyes were wide and he looked just about paralysed. One mild gust and the officer could see that the boy would likely spill their dinner on motor pool dirt. 


"Pal, quit fucking with him". Teniente Primo Rafael Serrat-Montressor sighed. When Serrat spoke, his voice came out husky, gravelly, like he smoked too much and never had a drop of water.


Pal's scrunched brow and look of admonishment quickly transformed into a grin. The short ginger-haired creole reached up and gave the taller Loupes a hard noogie.


"Top's right, noio, I'm just playing around. Lighten up, Saviour knows that we're fucking up the wire as it is. Fucking Comman-"


Serrat hissed a sudden warning at Pal. With practised verbal finesse, the sergeant snapped into an innocent tune.


"-mmunications could be better, eh?", he sang as Capitan Urdaneta, "Padre Pio" walked by the Battle Cat with his crew, Master Gunner Lluch and Sargento Tessarario Elkan. Padre Pio returned a salute to Serrat, who saluted the company commander the moment he approached. Pal and Loupes followed suit, though the latter clumsily saluted with bags of MREs in his other hand. 


Padre gave Serrat a small nod and grin, regarding his executive officer and the leader of his 1st Lance with a genial look. Out of all the enlisted men and officers in 2-COY, Padre, Master Gunner Lluch, and Serrat were probably the oldest. The rest were practically juveniles between the ages of 17 and 22. Padre was far from being a boomer at only 35 though his baritone voice and receding, greying hairline made you think he was older. Relatively new to company command, his short tenure was offset by his competence and experience, with 12 years spent inside MBTs. He drilled 2-COY hard making them one of the best, even in the harsh standards of Horse Grenadier units. Despite his more conservative view on command, Padre was still fair and was quickly learning how to develop a rapport with the zoomers he was suddenly in charge of. Serrat, who had always expressed his reluctance for unit leadership to Pal, found himself quickly given the 1st Lance and made XO to Padre's new company organisation. Serrat suspected that behind Padre's fatherly maturity, the man needed a confidant who wasn't constantly snorting about memes and making Field of Battle references. As the eldest among the 1st Lieutenants, Serrat was a clear choice. The other officers surmised that Serrat's lack of a social media presence was also factored into their CO's decision.


Padre often spoke more freely to Serrat when he was on edge. It was likely that he was using Serrat's habit of just observing the curious breed of rambunctions juniours that had invaded the company. Serrat could quietly read the company's sentiments, a talent that Padre had learned to get out of Serrat over the last year of drill and joint exercises.


"Raf, anything new while I was out?", Padre asked after he shooed his 2 crew away. Serrat had never explicitly given his CO the license to be on first-name bases but it wasn't like he could do a thing about it anyway.


Before replying, Serrat, or "Raf", as Padre called him likewise dismissed Pal and Loupes, who were fidgeting in the background. The 2 gratefully took their leave with Pal peeking into the MRE bags that Loupes had been holding.


Raf took Padre behind the Battle Cat and both men sat on a shell locker.


"Where do I start, Pap...", Raf sighed rhetorically.


"This was supposed to be easygoing. We've done this a hundred times before on exercise but Division throws us into some ad-hoc RCT and Logi falls apart? These kids are pretty damn unsure of themselves now, I can feel it. Just 6 months ago, they get their Cav pins in the GCs*, they're told they're the best—and they are—but we're about to roll into country with half our LOGPAC essentials missing"

*GC- short for Grenadieri a'Caval, or "Horse Grenadier" a type of division in the Iverican Army composed of "elite" units.


Serrat seldom said as many words in one go but there really wasn't any time to be as laconic and implicit as he normally was with matters of company morale. He was also starving, having spent half the day trying to decide why the Cat's auto-tensioning system shat itself and the other half manually getting the tension right on both sets of idlers.


Padre nodded.


"You know I've been at HQ for most of the week, so I'm not 100% on the particulars here..."


Serrat gestured to the Battle Cat behind them.


"Look Pap with just the Cat, the last software update we took just before we shipped somehow broke her auto-tensioning. That's one thing. We've also got the infrared system just refusing to work altogether. Pal thinks that some of the sensors got overcooled during storage and now there's condensation inside them. Thermals are also crapping out. We spent 2 hours tweaking hardware only to figure out that a version mismatch from that bad update disabled its sync with the ambient sensors- so she wasn't auto-calibrating to new conditions properly. These aren't even the most important bits. What's bothering all the crews is that instead of getting our usual load of HEAT, we're getting-"


Serrat stood up, motioning Padre to do the same. He flipped the lid on the shell locker.


"Is that-"


"Yessir. Fuckin' extra Wu-tangs*, Padre Pio-sir. These guys are using fucking T-62 knockoffs and ancient IFVs. This stuff is just going in one end and out the other. We've got maybe 10 HEAT per tank total, just ask QM. Last but not the least, Pap, Depot can't find the Level III armour segments. Frankly, sir, logi is a shitshow. I know logi's been strained because of how much is being moved to Ferrefaaierhafen, but Saviour's sainted ballsack..." 

*WU-TANG: a nickname for a Tungsten-Uranium supersabot. Named for both the mix of Wolfram (Tungsten) with Uranium and the Indiense hip-hop group, Wu-Tang-Ina Clan. The G900-WU APFSDS has a penetrator composed of 85% Tungsten with a narrow Depleted Uranium core for added mass. The round has a measured muzzle velocity of 1,770 m/s (5,807 ft/s) when fired from the 128-2 L/42. The round is estimated to be capable of penetrating 900-1000 mm of RHAe. Serrat's issue isn't with the Wu-Tang's lethality, it's with the fact that the round is more likely to over-penetrate a T-62. Its durability and speed mean that it will likely shear right through the tank cleanly and will not tumble or fragment very much. As a result, the enemy might survive the first direct hit and still be capable of returning fire. High-Explosive Anti-Tank (HEAT) would not have this issue and instead either create spalling or outright fill the enemy vehicle with disintegrating shell fragments.


"Look Raf, it's bad, no mistake, but we still have the supply to carry us through maybe 48-72 hours of expected contact. I know it will feel like we're wasting supersabots on their little scrap heaps but it's still AT and it still kills. As for the armour... that's something I can request Battalion to adjust to. We can play it safer at longer distances. We'll have to avoid any knife fights for now and be extra cautious for RPG ambushes."


Serrat snorted but Pap interrupted what was surely an exhortation of how that was easy to say but a fuck-ton harder to pull off.


"Raf, listen. I've got a friend in the FISQ*. Trust me on this one, I'll get him to up-tempo UAV loitering recce for us. It's not an ideal start here but we can't delay the Nyantastanis because we're missing kit. I need you to remind the boys that we've still got a massive edge here. Even without the Level-III ERA*, intel confirms that their shitty ammo can't get through our Level-II unless they're right in our faces."

*FISQ- Forward Intelligence Squadron. Refers to a type of Exersito Unit equipped for forward Electronic Listening, Electronic Support, and UAV Reconnaissance.

*ERA- Explosive Reactive Armour


Serrat sighed and nodded, kicking up some dirt with his boot. He took his pipe out and re-lit it. Padre took a cigar out of his tanker single-suit and lit it too. No MPs would dare interrupt the Padre on a smoke break.


"I'm counting on you and Pal here, Raf. Might not acknowledge it but these academy kids respect you. I also know that every ranker in 2-COY listens to Pal and that damned silver tongue of his. Remind them that we're Cav, remind them that we're Republican GC's. Let them know that our allies here will be watching. Every one of them will be expecting us to show them how armoured cav fights."


After Serrat's pipe burned out, he took his CO's leave and sauntered over to join Pal and Loupes in a meal of now-lukewarm MRE bean chilli and flatbread. Prep for 2-COY and others continued well into the night. Around the small crew in their little camo-net and tarp shelter, the sounds of FOB Sant Miquel preparing for war would continue until the very last second before REDCON 2 was declared. Even then, crews continued to troubleshoot systems from inside the cramped confines of their vehicles.


When 2-COY rolled out with the rest of the RCT combat element about 24 hours later, they were still missing their Level-III appliques. True to Serrat's estimate, most of the UC-42 Léons only had about 8-12 HEAT rounds in their racks- the rest of the load were expensive supersabots originally meant to defeat Anglian armour, 2 generations more advanced.




OOC: Just establishing that we're still here. Might have to work some details out with @Nyanta

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Phase 2: Sol and Mani

Darkness nothing but darkness. Single lights illuminate the otherwise so gloomy night and although it is summer so the temperatures are especially at night near the single digit range. It was quiet. The kind of silence that could be cut with a knife. The tension in the soldiers was palpable. 

21st "Mudcats" Mechanised Brigade
The only thing in the silence was the slow mechanical sound of the armored personnel carriers trying to drown out the soldiers' footsteps. With every rustle and crack in the bushes, the soldiers looked around tensely. Captain Bjørn saw the tension in the green-lit faces. Night vision devices were definitely a decisive advantage. A corporal of the patrol hastily approached their squad. It was immediately clear to the captain that the quiet of the night was now over.

"Kapten" The soldier standing in front of her was maybe in his early 20s and a bit scrawny. A few greasy blond brown hairs hung out of his helmet and you could see that he was still a child. But you could see from his stature and how the young man presented himself that he was well trained.

"Korpral" The woman who stood in front of him was in her late 30's. Although the corporal was already tall at 1.85cm, this imposing woman still towered over him by 5 cm. But she seemed as if she could overshadow him completely. Her waist-length blond hair a rarity in the military blew in the light breeze while her dark blue eyes stared him directly in the soul. The hair on the back of the soldier's neck stood up and  sweat ran down his face. "We have spotted a group of soldiers about 500 meters from here. As far as we know, they haven't spotted us yet."
After he spoke the words, he took a breath. Before he froze faster than still water in winter at the mention of his name.

"Korpral Sven. Keep an eye on them. Take one of my squads with you as backup. Nourish yourself to 300 meters." She paused for a moment and crossed her arms behind her back. This gesture made her look meters taller. "You know the protocol, ask them to surrender 2 times on Ulfheimish if they don't comply or open fire, neutralize them." With these words Sven saluted one last time "Yes Kapten" before he quietly stomped away. Cold sweat ran down his back. He had heard stories about Captain Olivia Bjørn but thought they were exaggerations. One of the best of her year and a leader. And he had also heard that she had a terrifying aura. Oh how the stories were understatements. And despite everything, she was appreciated by soldiers and officers alike. She knew the names of all the soldiers who served under her. And inquired how they were doing.
Sven looked back at the huge woman. The moonlight illuminated the tall figure. Old fashioned dressed. A clean navy blue uniform, the coat blew in the wind and the blade of what he thought was a useless saber reflected the moonlight.

The corporal quickly averted his gaze and within the next few minutes he reached his squad. Carl his squad leader was already waiting for him "And what do we do Sven? He sat down next to the others who were still watching the figures in the distance. "Close to 300 meters and follow the protocol." He paused for a moment."Even if the captain isn't thrilled about giving up the element of surprise." Carl shrugged, "Well, that's the way it is. The upper ones always think they're doing the best. And if we can win without a fight, that would be great." Sven and the other guys just nodded. Carl looked behind and saw another troop 150 meters away. "We're getting reinforcements?" Sven was embarrassed for forgetting such an important detail. "Yes, that's correct, I forgot to mention that Kapten Bjørn is sending a squad to reinforce us."

The conversation was over, everyone knew that, as Carl grabbed his weapon and flipped the night vision back in front of his eyes. In the next few minutes, the 7 sneaked up on the group of soldiers. As soon as they were in range, they all got ready to fight one last time. Ammunition was checked and everything was unlocked. Lajla, who spoke the best Ulfheimish of her group, crept a good 50 meters closer to the group. All were tense. Carl gave the signal and Aksel, who was lying next to Sven, fired a flare gun. The wooded tundra had suddenly become day. And the Ulfheim soldiers stood there as if caught by the spotlight. Lajla shouted in Ulfheimish that they should surrender. And that nothing will happen to them if they cooperate. Shocked by their own native language, one of the soldiers actually threw away his weapon and threw up his hands. Two more followed him. Number 4 was indecisive but made no move to raise his weapon. Lajla repeated the request. Just as she finished the last sentence. The fifth and last soldier pulled up his rifle and was about to fire. When a single well-aimed shot knocked him to the ground before his finger could even touch the trigger. The sniper Kajsa had once again lived up to her name. Number 4 threw his gun to the ground in panic and threw up his hands as well. Lajla gave them instructions in Ulfheimish while the reconnaissance squad and Captain Bjørn's reinforcements approached with weapons raised. The stricken soldier was roughly doctored by their squad medic before they called in an EVAC from Bjørn's squad.  For the Mudcats, the first night went quietly. They were able to capture 5 more squads and neutralize 2. As expected by the High Command, the Ulfheimr were disorganized and too disorganized by the special operation to form a front.


5th "Dragonfly" Aviation Brigade
The iconic flipping of the levers. The howling of the rotors and the ever accelerating flap flap flap. They had heard and experienced all this hundreds of times before. Everyone knew what he had to do. The equipment was checked and everyone was on board. The nightingale so the 4 had baptized their black CH-146 Griffon.  Rising like the majestic bird in the night sky.  Responsible for a few reconnaissance flights and air support.

"There's nothing like the fresh evening air" reported her pilot Ole. And as always, Elsa answered quickly and boldly. The young gunner didn't mince words, and together with Ole was the entertainment of the crew. The two lay themselves constantly with Idiotischen quarrel in the hair to the amusement of the others. "If you find the air so beautiful we can gladly exchange places." Meanwhile, the stoic Astor lit his cigarette. Because Astor smoked only from 100 meters because only from there the cigarette tasted so correctly good. At least that's what he claimed every time. No one was sure if that was true, but it was true that Astor was only seen smoking in a helicopter. With a big smile, Elsa turned to Astor and said, "Smoking again?  Astor turned with the cigarette in the mouth briefly to her before he looked again sighing into the sky. "Why do we have this conversation every time?". "Because you smoke every time we fly?" interjected Ole's co-pilot Finn. "Yeah you and your high altitude smoking" Elsa teased him further. Astor took a deep breath and was about to reply when a radio message from a JTAC* came in.

*Joint terminal attack controller  is the term used in the Armed Forces a for a qualified service member who directs the action of military aircraft engaged in close air support and other offensive air operations from a forward position. Joint terminal attack controller can aslo be  part of the artillery observation battery

"Nightingale. Nightingale come in please. This is Squad 2." Ole answered immediately and the mood changed from carefree and happy to serious and alert. "This is Nightingale what's up?". "Squad 2 India Delta Hotel 264 050. air support. 12 hostiles. Have entrenched themselves in a small settlement. No civilians. I repeat here Squad 2 India Delta Hotel 264 050. 12 targets no civilians. Need fire support." The helicopter immediately changed its trajectory and the two gunners Elsa and Astor let their machine guns warm up. "Roger that will be there in 5 minutes. Nightingale in 5. Over."

Quickly the helicopter was there and the crew could see from above the shots with flares of the Ulfheimr. Which was firing at a squad of Nyantastanis at the edge of the forest. "This is Nightingale commencing approach 1. I repeat Nightingale commencing first approach" The helicopter glided over the treetops and machine gun fire pelted the Ulfheimr like leaden rain. "This is Squad 2. Good run corrected for 32 degree approach from west to east. I repeat 32 degrees correction. West east." Ole corrected "This is Nightingale Approach 2" Again machine gun fire pounded down on the Ulfheimers. "Good job nightingale! You got them. Squad 2 out" Nightingale flew one more round to be sure before landing for a Dustoff*. The LZ** was in a clearing. Fortunately there were only 2 wounded from squad 2, an upper arm hit and a broken tibia. nightingale flew back to base to deliver the wounded and rearm. But as expected, the night remained relatively quiet. The surprise attack and training paid off. So nightingale flew 4 more reconnaissance flights 2 MED EVACS* and 1 CAS*** before they were relieved at the base by a fresh crew. A successful first day of the invasion. And these successes should continue to consolidate in the first weeks.

* Casualty evacuation, also known as CASEVAC or by the callsign Dustoff or colloquially Dust Off, is a military term for the emergency patient evacuation of casualties from a combat zone.

The primary difference between a CASEVAC and a medical evacuation (MEDEVAC) is that a MEDEVAC uses a standardized and dedicated vehicle providing en route care, while a CASEVAC uses non-standardized and non-dedicated vehicles that may or may not provide en route care. CASEVACs are commonly referred to as "a lift/flight of opportunity". If a corpsman/medic on the ground calls for a CASEVAC, the closest available unit with space could be called to assist, regardless of its medical capabilities.

 ** A landing zone is the cartographic (numeric) zone in which the landing is going to take place (e.g., a valley). The landing area is the area in which the landing is going to take place (e.g., the field where the aircraft are to land). The landing point is the actual point on which aircraft are going to land (e.g., a point of the field). Each aircraft has a different landing point.

*** In military tactics, close air support (CAS) is defined as aerial warfare actions—often air-to-ground actions such as strafes or airstrikes—by military aircraft against hostile targets in close proximity to friendly forces. A form of fire support, CAS requires detailed integration of each air mission with fire and movement of all forces involved. CAS may be conducted using aerial bombs, glide bombs, missiles, rockets, autocannons,  machine guns, etc.


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  • 3 weeks later...

OOC: Previous Part. This phase, the ambush, got so long that I'll have to divide it into 2 posts. This is the setup.


02 JUL 2022 | 2300 Zebra (Zulu) Time

FOB Sant Miquel, Nyantastani Border


Commander - TN. Rafael "Raf" Serrat-Montressor

It was half an hour into dark at the FOB. A light chill backed by calm winds had fallen upon the mustered tanks and support vehicles of 2-COY, "Bad Boy" company, 43rd Cuirassiers, 2nd Horse Grenadier Division. Around a cleared yard in front of the FOB's tank motor pool, some 15 tanks, 5 MRAPs, 3 trucks, 3 IFVs, an ambulance APC, and a recovery vehicle plus truck-towed trailers were neatly mustered-out in a phalanx square.


Teniente Serrat, or "Raf" as his peers and superiors called him, had been perched up on his cupola and inspecting the 12.7 mm remote weapon system turret for the 17th time that evening. He had been checking the headspace and feedway when Bad Boy 6, the company HQ's callsign, radioed.


This was it. After spending 2 hours mounted up and doing nothing for seemingly no cause, it looked like they were finally ready to move.


Just before, 2-COYs Sargento-Major had given the assembled Lances a nice speech that Serrat had barely listened to, dog tired as he was from troubleshooting his tank, the Battle Cat, all day. Then before that, he half-slept, waking every now and then to check if the Mariscal-II battle management computer safely finished its BIOS update and OS reinstall.


From his perch up in the commander's cupola, Serrat confirmed his receipt of the message. He strapped-up his combat vehicle crewman helmet and zipped his single-piece tankers suit. Serrat keyed his integrated helmet headset to the lance frequency and addressed his formation.


"All Bad Boy 1 elements this is Bad Boy 1 Actual... listen up kiddos. This is it. This is the one. In less than an hour, we will be cruising down Ulfan roads and making a beeline for Krysstad, our first objective. Bad Boy 1, Battle Cat Lance, we'll have point on this. So trail a column, neat-like. Keep spacing close before the border, about 15 metres and speed at 40 for now. Remember what you are. Motherfucking Horse Grenadiers, the best damned cav in Argis", at that Serrat got enthusiastic affirmations in response from his lance's tank commanders, mixed in with some audible cheers from the crews around the motor pool, waiting at their stations with their heads out of the hatches.


"Start your mares up, we are REDCON 1 to Oscar-Mike. Form on my lead. Bad Boy 1 Actual, Battle Cat, out."


As the Cat's V8 diesel purred to life, quieted by numerous noise-dampening measures, Serrat couldn't help but feel that the company was missing more than just the extra HEAT ammunition and reactive armour blocks.




Gunner - SGT. Palvaen "Pal" Saxweiro

Sargento Palvaen "Pal" Saxweiro sat above his unbuttoned hatch, enjoying the night air as the 2-COY finally rolled out of the FOB. To his right, Serrat sat up at his cupola, though the commander was far busier with his tablet, sliding his fingers over a 3D projection of the first few grids.


The column of tanks rumbled along nighttime Nyantastani highways in silence, Pal occasionally throwing peanuts at passing cars.


Typical Raf, Pal thought. The entire company gets to go on an all-expenses paid invasion-vacation, basically a frat party through some other asscrack nowhere country and all top is doing is scrolling through maps he's seen a billion times by now. Pal couldn't believe it. This was supposed to be fucking lit. Pal was amped. Go in, fuck shit up, get foreign pussy, no consequences! If Raf kept this up, it would be Alharu all over again. Pal - partying. Raf - drier and more uninteresting than his 7th-grade chemistry teacher, Ms Roxas' wrinkly snatch.


He had to lighten the mood or this whole deployment would be all boring and mature. Shit, pseudo-boomers like Raf didn't know how to enjoy a good war. They were all "OPSEC" and "Professional" and whatever. Fucking BORING.


"Hey... Top", Pal called out over the intercom, conspiratorially.


"No.". Raf hadn't even looked up from his tablet.


"I didn't even say-", Pal groaned.


"I know what you're going to say. The answer is, NO. This is a complex, combined arms, armoured spearhead operation to break our enemies' will to fight with shock, awe, and exact use of fire superiority- we will not be starting it by singing Nickelfront*"

*Nickelfront - a particularly bad multinational pop-country rock band. Known for their unsophisticated music and meme-able lyrics.


Pal groaned louder, smacking his helmeted head against the gunshield of his custom-mounted 8.6 mm machine gun.


"But Raf, it's Battle Cat tradition", Pal groused, using his CO's given name in an attempt at endearment.


It wasn't working.


"Sargento, one single half-assed time we, mostly you and Ramon, sang Rockstar driving out to some shitty wargame in Variota does not a tradition make. No, I will not spend the next few months of this deployment listening to your atrocious taste in pleb music somehow worsened by that cocksucker's wail you call a voice. No Nickelfront and in fact, no singing at all."


Pal grimaced a little at the mention of Ramon, the guy Loupes replaced before scowling at Serrat's attitude. Top, Raf, took himself way too seriously. If he hadn't known and fought alongside the cranky Tacalan man for what - 6 years now? - Pal would probably do something stupid out of spite. Like slip some goat shit into his pipe tobacco.


Pal whinged and moped all the way to the border. He didn't say a word when an H&S company MRAP drove up to them to drop off some 'terp* the entire 2-COY command had apparently forgotten to request from the Nyantastanis. He just groaned internally when the 'terp clambered onto their tank from the side of the highway.

*'Terp: Short for "interpreter".


Another fucking boomer. Pal bet that this huge bone-head grunt was going to be best friends with Raf. The grunt NCO tried to introduce himself but in response, Pal hawked a gobbet of phlegm and spat out his side of the tank. The 'terp shrugged and amicably introduced himself to Serrat and Loupes instead. Pal just grumbled and sighed when Serrat ordered him to get out so the 'terp could slip into the fighting compartment. The only consolation Pal had was that he could torture the 'terp. At least if this fucking grunt was going to ruin the party, Pal could fart and annoy the hell out of the guy, who was forced to take the jumpseat behind and below Pal's station.


Still, he could have made like, 15 sex jokes by now but he wasn't going to because Raf Serrat was being a dickhead. A war? With no singing? This was going to be the lamest fucking deployment ever.




Interpreter - FJK. Lucas Holm

"*Oh boy, you have so much to give

Oh boy, don't let it get you down"

*Though they didn't end up singing Nickelfront, Serrat settled on allowing songs by Modern Talking. Link to the song: Who Will Save the World?


The gunner, "Pal" or something, sang (really, it was more like yowled) into the intercom. The young NCO had a terrible voice but that didn't stop the short skinny ginger-headed gunner from confidently yelling through the headset. The crew of the Battle Cat didn't seem to mind. In fact, the commander, Teniente Serrat even sang along sometimes. Loupes, their fresh-out-of-highschool driver tried to chime in now and again but couldn't quite follow- he was too young for the song.


The tank rattled and hummed as it cruised down the unlit darkness of a seemingly endless Ulfan highway. The Battle Cat and her company were the spearhead of the massed coalition force behind it. She rolled along, at the head of an armoured column 15 main battle tanks strong.


"Who, baby, who will save the world?", Pal continued, clanging his boots on the fighting compartment floor.


"It's not too late...", Serrat hummed on, much more quietly, with his gravelly, rough scratch of a voice.


"Who, baby, who will save the world? All heroes hesitate!", they sang, duet.


"I'm too young to die", they both chorused.


"I'm too young to die!", Loupes tried to fill in, a tad off-timing.



From the cramped and rattling fold-down jump seat behind of the gunner's station, Lucas just tried (and failed) to catch some sleep. Unfortunately, every other second was interrupted by Pal screeching into the intercom. Lucas Holm, 2-COYs middle-aged Nyantastani interpreter was suffering through it all. His ears were starting to ring from the sharp crackle of terrible, terrible singing and his head ached from trying to rest it against the turret cage, which separated the fighting compartment from the rest of the hull.


The Fanjunkare (OR-7, something like First Sergeant), in his mid 30's already, knew that he was getting to the age where all this was too much. The interior of the tank, while climate conditioned, was cramped and stale. It was dim too, lit only by dim red low-vis LED strips. Lucas had a fair bit of height on him and was well-built. His 6'1" frame was practically crumpled, with his knees tucked up tight and his head stooped under a switchboard and breaker box.


To make matters worse- his head was right underneath the ring. It whined with a loud keening cry when the electronic servos spun and the whole bloody thing traversed, startling Lucas badly a few times. Teniente Serrat had warned him the first time he clambered in and Pal had uselessly tried to spook him about something ambiguously named "the Turret Monster", which was apparently some form of invisible tank legend, some mythical creature that devoured possessions, clothing, and even fingers. Lucas had no idea what they were talking about until his sleeve got caught by the "Turret Monster" evidently referring to tank's propensity to catch loose items in the turret ring when it spun. His uniform was now missing the end of its right sleeve (his favourite one!).


Lucas had no idea it would be like this when his CO had informed him of his assignment. Most of his buddies got cushy assignments with Military Police, Civilian Relations, or Iverican Command units. He, solely, was the only one in his company to be put in a frontline Main Battle Tank Company. While perfectly competent as a career NCO, Lucas wasn't expecting to be quite literally picked off the side of the highway as the unit advanced across the border. He had absolutely no- none- zero- MBT training. He may have been an experienced warfighter, having been in the infantry from his earliest days as a teenage rifleman but this was something else.


He knew the Ivericans were foreign and had odd customs but this company seemed full of children and barbarians. On one roadside stop, one of the other crewmen, more like a literal boy of around 17 (that would have been young Jose "Joesie" Dei Grau, Soldado Tecnico, driver for the tank "Boy Band") slapped Lucas in the ass and winked as the NCO finished relieving himself by a ditch. Fucking winked. The rest of the Boy Band's crew just laughed and catcalled. They used terms like:









The list went on and on. What even was a "Rizz"?


The crew of the Battle Cat, while a little more mature, was nonetheless strange and eccentric. The gunner, "Pal" most of all. Pal carried an arrogant disrespect for everything that wasn't his commander. Religion, politics, ethnicity? Pal hated them all and told Lucas just as much. Loudly. Rudely. Many, many times. He also chewed gum, stank of cigarillos, and tapped his feet irritatingly close to Lucas' head. Unfortunately for Lucas, his jumpseat sat about 2 feet lower and behind of the gunner's own. Which meant that every damn fart that the young gunner made was very close and very, very olfactible.


Resigned to his fate, Lucas tied his scarf tight to his face and eventually fell into a troubled, rather smelly sleep.


When he awoke the tank interior was dark. They'd stopped somewhere. Fuck, his whole body hurt like a sonofabitch.




Commander - TN. Rafael "Raf" Serrat-Montressor


Serrat was on the ground and walking before Loupes even stopped the tank. The pre-dawn light had the surrounding Ulfan landscape faintly lit in a deep purple hue. They were now at a stretch of low rolling hills between the coast and the first layer of highlands.


Clogged roads and bridges had meant that they'd made it only about 50 klicks the whole night. It was close to 0400 local now and they'd just made it to the Regimental Combat Team's forward staging point some 6 klicks away from the town of Krysstad, the capital of the Ulfan border region. The whole RCT had trained for weeks to take Krysstad. It was expected to be the first major land engagement of the invasion.


Thus far most of the battles fought had been forward screening and recce elements engaging border security and local irregulars. 2-COY had passed a few burnt-out Ulfan APCs, IFVs, and trucks along the coastal highway - meaning that some resistance was still present despite reports of numerous surrenders and defections. The border region was more of a nation unto itself, with a distinct set of clans or tribes with a somewhat rocky relationship with the ethnic majority in the capital heartlands.


The Teniente had little time to admire the pastoral views and ponder on the details of the initial advance, however, and he instead strode briskly past the vehicles and personnel of 1-COY and the H&S company. Around him, mean dozed on open bedrolls or gathered around flameless stoves, brewing strong pots of coffee and heating MREs.


Weaving his way around the orderly assemblage of tanks and wheeled vehicles, the tall wiry first officer of 2-COY made his way to the RCT's command tent, where regimental command was gathering company commanders and executive officers.


The NCO on watch snapped a quick salute to Serrat and raised the entrance flap for him. Inside, a warm orange glow lit the expansive tent, about the size of a large hotel suite. The smell of rich freshly ground coffee warmed the Teniente's nose, a far cry from the powdered or concentrate brews of the enlisted cook pits outside.


The centre of the tent was dominated by folding tables put together to form 1 long table. Around the space, small rings of officers congregated, cliques and friends from the RCT's officer cadre talking in their little in-unit groups. Some of the more advancement-hungry ones had even donned their aiguillettes, sabres, cloaks, and peaked officer caps - affectations that Serrat cared little for, dressed in his plain tanker jumpsuit. The only piece that made him stand out as an officer was his holstered service pistol and the cap-badge on his cover which he had swapped his helmet for before he jumped off the Cat.


Serrat had wandered over to the large samovar of freshly brewed Altarian medium roast when a calloused hand clapped him on the back.


"Raf!", came the gruff and warm voice of the Padre, or Piolo "Pap", Urdaneta-Berenguer, CO of 2-COY.


Serrat's commanding officer gave him a small wrinkled grin from his lined face. Pap was a few inches shy of Raf's height but was stockier and well-built. Like Serrat, Pap didn't care much for an officer's affectations and wore his plain combat uniform and pistol, though the older Capitan kept his sabre on his belt where Serrat did not.


There was another officer waiting just behind Pap, someone from 3-COY that Serrat didn't really know. A Teniente by the looks of his epaulette and cap-badge.



"Sir.", Serrat returned, touching his cover with his right fingers in a quick salute.


"Just the man... Listen I wanted to give you a heads-up before the Coronel gets in.We've got a FRAGORD, just came in now. Think there's gonna be some changes and it looks like yourself and Albein here will be-", Pap had gestured the young officer behind him when the tent flap was raised again.


"CORONEL. SALUTE", came the bellow of the Regimental Sargento-Major.


At that, all the officers in the room immediately fell silent, stood-to, and snapped a sharp salute.


An older officer dressed in his combat uniform entered after the senior NCO and gazed around the tent's space.


"At ease", came the Coronel's stentorian voice as he strode towards the centre of the room. A small team of adjutants and staffers followed behind him, rolling down a white screen and setting up a laptop and projector.


"Gentlemen. Like myself, I know all of you have just spent the better part of the night on the road and are eager to close with and destroy the enemy at Krysstad."


A chorus of, "hear hears", and sabres rattling in their scabbards filled the room at that.


"I am pleased to announce that as planned, the RCT will be taking point in the liberation of the provincial capital and its environs. However, there are a number of developments passed from G-2 that have warranted theatre command to make some changes. Given the time-sensitive nature of these developments and the resulting Fragmentation Order, I must put this address ahead of our briefing protocol."


The Coronel stood beside the projector and nodded.


Serrat watched on as the Coronel and his staff brought the situation to light.




The Briefing

ISR* from the FISQ has spotted a large formation of armour, mechanised, and motorised infantry flanking down from the highlands along the northeast, scheduled to enter within our AO in the next 24 hours. Given the composition and attitude of their movements, G-2* asserts that this battalion-sized unit has the intent of outflanking and preventing the forward elements of our spearhead from effectively surrounding the objective of Krysstad. Screening elements have not yet encountered heavier armoured resistance such as the T-62s and T-72s making up the bulk of this flanking thrust. Despite efforts from initial air strikes on enemy concentrations, the survival of elite armoured units in the north of the country was to be expected.

*ISR: Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance.

*G-2: Division-level Intelligence Staff.


Rest assured, G-2 and theatre command had expected this scenario and prepared accordingly. I can disclose that our strategy at this phase allowed for a gap in our forward screen and aerial coverage to form - this had the intention of inviting a counter-attack from surviving units. The rationale was to draw hunkered-down armour out of safety and thus grant us the opportunity to funnel, surround, and destroy remaining massed armoured resistance in the region. As you can see, the bait worked and elements of the Ulfan 1st Armoured Brigade have consolidated into a battalion task force, likely presuming that they have the opportunity to catch our forces out of balance by coming through the valleys of Innsdal. The enemy likely presumes that the high ridges and steep hills of this region would disrupt line-of-sight for recce and grant a modicum of cover against anything other than high-angle of attack airstrikes. From Innsdal, the enemy's likely course of action will be to engage our flanks at long range and retreat into the cover of the valleys when our air comes for them.


As you know, the enemy is mistaken. While air from the Nyantastani Air Force and the @Gallambrian 627 squadron is more than capable of dropping ordnance consistently on their route, theatre command has elected to hold on striking the battalion task force and to allow their approach into Innsdal unmolested.


Our orders now, gentlemen, are to form a combined arms detachment to ambush and destroy the task force. After reviewing our current conditions, I have decided that 2-COY should take the lead on this detachment. I am further reinforcing this detachment with 3 lances from our mechanised company, 1 lance of Leons from 3-COY, and attaching a forward observation team with accompanying JTACs.


Furthermore, a Nyantastani component composed of 3 platoons of infantry, 1 motorised platoon with ATGMs, and support from pre-embedded special forces.


Moving forward, you should hear from 2-COY's Capitan Urdaneta yourselves.


Pap took the floor and cycled the slides.


I have identified this segment of highway 450 as our best opportunity for a killbox.


Pre-ambush, there is a trifling matter of ridding the detachment from observation and early warning from enemy screening units. Given that any attack on said forward units will likely prevent an effective ambush, 2-COY has elected to have armoured units standby around 2-3 klicks from the ambush zone. However, Nyantastani infantry platoons will be able to covertly infiltrate much closer to the zone, letting the screening elements pass without incident. We have earmarked another Nyantastani unit to intercept and destroy these light recce elements later.


Employing the embedded special forces, a number of obstacles can be set up to slow the battalion's main component. A trucking accident and minor landslide can be arranged to further bunch up the task force's armoured core which will initially be spaced wider company by company. The obstacles should also give our armoured ambush elements to complete their insertion and set up hasty ambush positions and mines.


Once in position, the detachment will await the arrival of the enemy task force and initiate contact once the lead elements have crossed Phase Line Alpha, denoted by the strip of road with mines. At that time, it is likely that the enemy's rear elements would also fall between Phase Lines Charlie and Delta...




Serrat watched impassively, noting his own position in Pap's plan. While he knew that the 2-COY would be annoyed to learn that the Krysstad - which they had been training to take for weeks - would be some other unit's glory, they might yet be pleased to trade it for an opportunity like this. Up close and personal with a battalion of enemy armour. Some of the younger glory hounds would probably be over-eager, frothing at the mouth for such an opportunity. Raf just felt like a healthy heap of caution would be needed where the Coronel and Pap were so eager. There were many ways this could go wrong. A heap of variables depended on conditions being just right. Though under no circumstances would he undermine Pap or question him in front of the whole officer cadre.


Serrat just smiled a little and nodded as Pap outlined the plan. At least Pal would get to shout, "git sum!", at tanks a few times this deployment.






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Commando Saboteurs 

Behind enemy lines
Somewhere near Krysstad
Special Operations Unit|| Queens Ranger Wing 
Enemy Tank Battalion|| Late Evening||

"I'm glad we found you."
Spoke a voice in Ulfheim uniform at a campfire flanked by 2 lying tree trunks. The man, about 30, was the smallest of the group that had joined the unit a few days ago. But this was nothing new, after all, the country is at war.

Another voice rang out, "And we're glad to have you here. After all this mess. We can use every warrior. That they would dare to anger the gods like this. To attack out of the blue." The man was full of rage, and yet he looked extremely dejected.

Arye, the man starting the conversation, stoked the fire a bit and nodded while listening to his new chamber mate Gragas. "And then for no reason. We should have just overrun them years ago!" Gragas stood up and gesticulated wildly.

Hannes, who was sitting next to Arye, shook his fist seemingly angrily. But he actually thought about how ill-informed the Ulfheimr must be. If they had not heard of the provocations and transgressions of their living god.
"Well, if you keep yelling like that, their fighter planes will hear us," the voice sounded like throwing a handful of nails into a bucket and hurling it around. Thor, the leader of their platoon, was old and scarred. Although he commanded one of the tanks, he was a giant in the battalion at 190 cm tall. His long white beard and the light really made you think he was some kind of god.

"We'll get even with them, my boy. We've found a gap in their formation and a safe route for an attack. We're moving out at 2300." With these words, Thor left the group to carry the good news. Ingram's ears perked up at the information. And he sighed before looking to his comrades and then to Gragas.  You're really telling me they're going to fall for this… barbarians.

Within the next hour they were sitting by the fire before Gragas left them as well. To communicate behind enemy lines with minimal chance of detection. The Nyantastan military developed a mixture of gestures and military signals some time ago. The disadvantages are obvious, but especially in such situations this is the safest way of communication. So while they continued to talk normally so as not to arouse suspicion. The 3-man squad communicated in secret.

"We all agree that there will be an ambush, right?" At their squad leader's question, they all nodded in affirmation. "Good, that means we need to keep the troops close together and figure out where the ambush is most likely to take place. Ingram you try to get into one of the lead vehicles. Hannes, you and I will join the logistics. It's going to be stupid if you have to refuel every 30 kilometers."

That was the end of the meeting Ingram, who was a bit younger anyway, pretended to be an enthusiastic warrior of Odin. His love for history helped him to be so convincing that even some fanatics were surprised. Fortunately, they only bugged him with questions about the gods instead of wondering how he knew all that. The additional training hours of the defectors certainly didn't hurt either. Meanwhile, under the cover of night, Hannes and Arye were working on some tanks. Nothing too flashy. Most people would think that the metal was simply corroded. Good thing the military regularly siphons off some acid from Brunswick. That done, Hannes joined one of the engineers to get some more tools and insights. While Arye made friends with the logisticians. In the course of the next few days, there were always minor breakdowns and stops. Once even wolves attacked the MRE's and have made almost half unusable. The responsible guard had probably fallen asleep despite coffee. At this point, it is hardly necessary to mention that this person was never seen again.  After all was clear where they drove long, it became also the small group ever clearer where a good position for an ambush was. That the Ulfheimers blindly seized this opportunity made their incompetence and pride even more ridiculous.  

Of course, this was no easy matter for Hannes, Ingram and Arye.  Once they were almost exposed.

"Tell me, which clan are you from? Or what combat unit?"

Ingram looked at Hannes, and both didn't know for a moment if this was a joke. Just as Ingram was about to answer, the questioner laughed himself to death, "As if I expect a serious answer to that. The main thing is that you are here now! We're going to get back what's ours!"

The sigh of relief. And the journey went without incident. There was still the challenge of the screening. But everyone was sure that this problem would be solved. After all, the one or other mishap had not only worsened the mood. A few of the troops were also still hungry and disappeared regularly to hunt. Which led naturally again to still more breakdowns. The saboteurs were successful and thanks to the mixture of pride and the hope to win this lost war, everyone was too busy to even think about something like saboteurs.

Nyantastan Special Operations Unit of the Queens Ranger Wing

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  • 4 weeks later...


**As usual, some passages here depict graphic scenes of death and wartime injuries. Don't read if you're uncomfortable with that.

Part 1

Part 2

Background: The ground assault theatre opens with Ibero-Nyanta forces entering the Ulfan border regions. Diverting from their original objective to take the regional capital of Krysstad, 2-COY, callsign "Bad Boy" forms an ambush detachment with several other units. Their objective: to intercept and annihilate a Battalion Task Force from Ulfan's elite 1st Armoured Brigade. An ambush is laid in the highlands with surprise made possible by Nyantastani covert efforts and sabotage. Highway 450 is mined. Infantry and armoured forces lie in wait for a force that far outnumbers their own.

Company XO, TN. Raf Serrat and the crew of Bad Boy 1-1, "Battle Cat" lead the anvil of the ambush.



Order of Battle



Dusk ambush on Highway 450, moments before execution.



  • Exersito Iverica
    • Bad Boy 6 - HQ
    • Bad Boy 1, 2, 3 - MBT
    • Vaquero 2 - MBT
    • Brigand 1,2,3 - IFV
    • Drumroll 4-1 FO/JTAC
  • Nyantastani Army
    • Karoliner 1, 2, 3, 4 - Infantry with AT
    • Drabant 1 - Towed ATGM


  • 11x MBT Platoons
  • 7x IFV Platoons
  • 5x Sustainment Elements
  • 4x Motorised Infantry


03 JUL 2022 | 2213 Zebra (Zulu) Time

Highway 450, Innsdal, Ulfheimr


Gunner - SGT. Palvaen "Pal" Saxweiro


Despite the climate-controlled interior of the Battle Cat, Sargento Palvein "Pal" Saxweiro's brow formed a hefty drip of sweat that collected there and slid down, slicking the rubber padding of his aiming device. He had spent the last hour fixed to his seat with his face stuck to the rubber of the binocular-type aiming device jutting out of the UC-42-A2's fire control station.

To his right, over the massive breech of the 128mm main gun, Teniente Rafael Serrat-Montressor sat at the commander's station at eyeball-defilade, the top of his head just out and over the lip of his cupola. Every so often, Serrat or "Raf" would check for updates on the commander's 3 display panels.

In front of Pal, Loupes fidgeted in the driver's seat, shifting his balance, twitching or rubbing his sweaty palms together. The joints on his seat squeaked sharply at every restless movement. The kid was full of nerves and it was throwing off Pal's zen.


"Loupes you fuck-up of a failed abortion, quit it!", Pal hissed, taking his sweat-damp face out of the aiming device.

"Sorry Sarn't!", the kid said shakily, whipping his face with a dirty cloth.

"Fuck, Top, are you seeing this shit? We cannot count on some kid shaking like a shitting dog to keep us mobile and alive-"

"Break! I have something", said Lucas from the jumpseat behind and below Pal's gunner station.


Not knowing what else to do with him, Raf had given the Nyantastani NCO an unofficial role as the tank's Electronic Support Measures operator. The Leon's command variant was equipped with a compact Electronic Listening (ELINT) system which was fairly easy to operate if you knew how to work a backpack combat net radio. The 30-something career NCO had been a Radio Telephone Operator attached to a Forward Observer unit when he'd been in the infantry and the ELINT system on the Leon was similar enough for him to teach by crash course.


"Teniente, I'm getting encrypted traffic, DF* says bearing 2-8-0 dash 2-9-0", the 'terp reported in his Nyantastani accented Anglish.

*DF - Direction Finding


Serrat keyed his headset into the ELINT channel to confirm. He checked his display to cross-reference the bearing with the enemy battalion's last known. A moments pause later, he relayed the info to Company Command, Bad Boy 6 Actual, posted up less than a klick south of their position.


"That's not the main battalion group, I think we've got a splinter force wandering somewhere else out there", Serrat muttered ominously.


Pal looked to his commander.


"Well shit, that ain't good-", Pal began.

"Not our problem just yet. I've called it in, it's Pap's order on what to do with the intel. Right now, gentlemen, we are concerned solely with the destruction of whatever unlucky fuck moves into our killbox. So keep further speculation to yourselves-"


No sooner had Serrat finished when his headset beeped and blinked a message from another channel. Serrat paused and listened in. His brows narrowed and he looked darkened before the commander switched channels and spoke into his headset.


"All Bad Boy elements, this is Bad Boy 1 Actual. Confirming message from Karoliner 2. Karoliner 2 overwatch reports elements crossing Phase Line Delta. Contact Imminent."




Sector South: Bad Boy 1 & 2 open fire after AT mines are detonated. Karoliner 4, a Nyanta Infantry platoon, provides forward security and enfilading fire. Brigand 3 stands by to secure the sector.



Commander - TN. Rafael "Raf" Serrat-Montressor


The lead IFVs rode right over the mines at Phaseline Alpha, chassis and debris spiralling into the air as buried munitions shattered the ground beneath them. At first, a silent display of fire and spark, the highway just north of them became a drumroll of shockwaves. Seconds later, the rumbling thunderclap of simultaneously detonating Anti-Tank Mines followed, carrying a rib-rattling reverb.

Watching the bloom of explosive fire through his terminal, Serrat gave the go-word to Bad Boy and Vaquero units.

Behind their hill off the side of the highway, Pal squeezed the trigger on his fire control stick. The tanks of Bad Boy lances 1, 2, 3, and Vaquero 2 fired. From behind the defilade, the clap of Anti-Tank Guided Missiles firing echoed out, the shriek of their solid-propellant rocket motors following a split-second later. The incandescent streaks wobbled and then spiralled off towards pre-designated tracks marked by coordinated tracking from designators posted on the hills flanking the highway.

In the dappled lighting of Ulfan dusk, the volley of heavy ATGM munitions resembled some vision of ballistae bolts aflame, super-accelerated with the information age magic of modern warfare. Further forward, recoilless munitions from Karoliner infantry joined in, followed by the streaking glow of Drabant's own towed ATGMs firing further down the line.

The column erupted into hellfire. In that single beat, 21 vehicles were erased from the enemy's order of battle, exploding as their munitions detonated or crumpling as High-Explosive Anti-Tank warheads punched through their thin top plating.

The ambush force intentionally targeted both the lead and rear vehicles, clogging the highway with burning scrap. The middle segment was effectively boxed in between the lake, the sheer hill slope and the wrecks of their destroyed or immobilised vanguard and rear-guard.

4 tank lances opened fire with missiles from behind cover a second time, sporadic contributions coming from the Nyantastani infantry platoons and towed ATGM battery.


"Bad Boy 6, Bad Boy 1 Actual. Volleys-out. Good effect on target. Moving to engage directly", he reported to Pap with his headquarters callsign before switching to the tank intercom.

"Driver, up."


The Battle Cat lurched forward, revealing itself on the saddle of their chosen hill. In front of them was a column of chaos. The entire stretch of highway oozed smoke and bloomed in fire. Ambushers and prey traded hypersonic munitions. The rounds tore vortices of twisting smoke, spiralling into and out from the column. Ambushed between the cliff slope and the lake, some 11 tank platoons, 7 IFV platoons, motorised infantry, and their forward sustainment units traded rounds with the coalition mixed armour and infantry to their left, right, and front.

On both hills flanking the highway, a pair of Long-Range Acoustic Devices began blasting the track, "Emmigrant Song". Tin Dirigible's* guitar riff gave way to the wurld-reknown intro cries, the music echoing around the valley as the powerful sound machines blared the song directly at the enemy.

*Tin Dirigible is a prolific Gallambrian rock band most known for tracks like, "Ladder to Paradise" and "Whole Lotta Hate".



Sector Centre: Elsewhere in the ambush, Bad Boy 3 & Vaquero 2 engage the middle segment of the column, Drumroll 4-1 provides laser designation and radar fire control for the whole ambush.



Gunner - SGT. Palvaen "Pal" Saxweiro


The tank leapt out of cover, over the rim between 2 hill peaks, its hydro-pneumatic suspension hissing as it pitched the whole 40-tonne beast forward, hull-down. The gun stabilisers whined as they worked in perfect concert with the tank's dynamic suspension.

Pal spat out some gum he was chewing and stuck it on the side of his periscope-like gun sight. His face was already stuck to the rubber padding of the binocular-type viewer as the display fed him targeting data, showing the world in the charcoal "white-hot" glare of his thermal FLIR*.

*FLIR - Forward Looking Infrared


"Gunner, Sabot, Tank. Marked track", he heard Serrat order in his monotone rasp.

"Identified Tank, on track!", Pal shouted as the turret and gun smoothly aligned and layed-on with a deft adjustment of his control stick.


The fire-control computer had already correlated the track displayed on the bottom right of his interface, showing the line representing his gun's muzzle touching a blip representing the track ID. The laser range finder returned 3 range values, his reticule turning from grey to red. It was a Firing solution.



"Ooooooon the way!", Pal sang as he squeezed the stick's trigger, the squeeze timed with the word "way".


A pressure wave rocked the fighting compartment. The massive 128 mm gun breech recoiled. Designated by the tank's fire-control radar, a T-72 already immobilised by a mine was struck by the Cat's tungsten-uranium dart. The sabot, the size of a javelin head and the thickness of a flagpole sheared it through the lower glacis and sliced into the turret floor ammunition storage. Jets of fire, burning like flames of a propane stove, leaked from every gap in the T-72 for a few seconds. A moment later, the entire vehicle went up in a ball of incandescent fire.


"Target", Serrat marked the kill over the intercom.

"That's a K-Kill*. Traverse right, identify IFV, close. HEAT indexed."

*K-Kill - Catastrophic Kill, Complete Kill. Usually marked by total destruction of an enemy vehicle, like through ammo detonation.


The gun's breech had spat out a little disk, all that remained of the 128 mm G900-WU "Wu-Tang" round it fired. The autoloader machinery behind a thickly armoured bulkhead whined and rumbled. The hatch to the bustle cassette autoloader slammed open, shooting out a fresh round canister. The canister slid along a guide rail and met the open breech. A rammer arm shot out of the autoloader depths and slammed the new round home. The breech block raised and sealed with a dull clunk. In a single fluid motion, the whole array withdrew, folding back into the depths of the tank's bustle. A little indicator light on the turret ceiling switched from red to neon green.


"HEAT, up", a feminine robotic voice chirped into the intercom. Pal liked to think her name was Maria.

"Identified IFV, close!", Pal announced, watching his terminal as the reticule slid over the target and 3 range values popped into the display, correlating and lighting up his reticule to red in a scant heartbeat.

"Send it."

"GIT SUM", Pal howled. The breech slammed back again.

"Target. Gunner, Index Co-Ax*. Looks like we have bail-outs, close."

*Co-Ax - Co-Axial Machinegun. The machinegun fixed parallel to the main gun.


Pal watched impassively through his sight as an IFV's passengers and crew scrambled out, on fire or disoriented. Their bright thermal silhouettes crawled about like drunken ants.


"Identified infantry!", Pal confirmed.

"Hose 'em", Serrat said, sounding like he was asking Pal to water his garden petunias. Serrat likewise keyed his remote 12.7 mm turret and unlocked his own stick.


The 8.6mm co-ax rattled inside the tank, its chain of belts shuddering as they fed the gun. Above, spent casings from the 12.7mm clattered and clinked on the turret deck. Little puffs of mist bloomed on the white-hot thermal imager as rounds impacted the bailed-out men. Serrat and Pal quickly raked out several long bursts before letting friendly infantry from Karoliner 4 mop the rest up.


"That's enough. Leave the rest for the infantry. Driver, back", Serrat called.


As if to punctuate the point, a shrill warning rang from the Active-Protection System's radar. The APS system* triggered, one of the tablet launchers that crowned the UC-42's turret fired. A blast from the launcher turned a shaped metal tablet into an explosively-formed penetrator and detonated an incoming HEAT round that flew a bit too close for comfort.

*Interfector APS - A set of reloadable launchers around the tank turret. Metal panels are shaped into high-velocity penetrators by an explosive charge. The penetrators can intercept low-velocity munitions.

Serrat hit a stud on the thumb-side of his stick, triggering the launchers around the tank. Countermeasure grenades coughed out and burst into clouds of smoke and reflective filament around the Cat's front arc. The tank lurched with gut-turning acceleration as it reversed out of position, earth and gravel spraying in front of its tracks.

Pal's helmeted head bonked against the bulkhead as the Battle Cat banked right. Then it twisted left in reverse before coming to a sudden stop.


"Loupes, ease up!", Serrat chided.

"Yes, sir", Loupes called out, a touch too loud over the intercom. He was probably a mess of shitless nerves.


The tank accelerated forward with a bit more control, smoothly banking left around the right flank of the low hill. The turret ring's electric servos keened sharply as the turret traversed left just as the tank peeked over its next position.



Commander - TN. Rafael "Raf" Serrat-Montressor


Serrat swivelled his periscope-like viewer as the entire Bad Boy 1 lance shifted positions around the pair of hills marking their ambush position. His Mariscal II computer sent and received radar track data amongst the other battle management computers in the ambush force. Picking a target from the shared data, he marked the closest active MBT track as his and called it out to Pal.


"Gunner, Sabot, Tank. Marked track. Fire as it bares*."

*To fire as the target becomes "bare" or seen in the sight picture. At the gunner's discretion.


The Cat had scarcely passed the corner when the breach recoiled.


"Target. Good one. Driver, back it up. Play peek-a-boo. Take turns with 1-2."


 Serrat switched freqs and reached out to Bad Boy 1-2, otherwise known as the 1-800 Get Some Help.


"1-2, 1-1 Actual. Peek-a-boo with me. You're up."


The 1-800's commander acknowledged and move to take the Cat's position. The Cat was already careening around the opposite end of the hill when 1-2 fired its shot and ducked back into defilade. The Cat rounded the hillside and Pal fired again, scoring another kill. Loupes yanked the tank back in full reverse just as the 1-800 popped out of another position on the other side of the hill and fired. 1st Lance repeated the pattern in pairs. 1-1 with 1-2 and 1-3 with 1-4. The tanks of 1st Lance popped out of every conceivable and inconceivable firing position in their pair of hills, like some infernal whack-a-mole machine spitting hypersonic death javelins instead of arcade tickets. It was a high-mobility, high-coordination stress tactic but it was one all Horse Grenadier Cuirassiers knew by heart and drilled ad nauseum in the hills of Leon and Nou Stille.

While it would be far more efficient to maintain a fixed hull-down position and lay down a steadier rhythm of fire, the hasty ambush had no time to dig extensive earthworks. More importantly, the 'stani infantry and the other tank lances on the eastern hill right next to the ambush highway were relying on Bad Boys 1 and 2 to keep enemy fire guessing and sporadic.

1st Lance just about cleared their segment of the enemy column when Pap radioed-in from his HQ tank more than a click south. Serrat listened stiffly and acknowledged. He switched to the lance freq and gave his orders.


"Break-break, Bad Boy 1 elements, 1-1 Actual. Message from 6: One of Brigand 3's victors has thrown a track. 1-1 and 1-2 will link up with the rest of Brigand 3 and act as close support. 1-3 and 1-4 will hold and provide cover from this position. Copy?"


A chorus of acknowledgements went around lance freq.


"1-2, form on me and stop when I do, we'll pick up the 'stani ground pounders on the way, they're mounting up so make sure that APS is on safe, I don't want to be moping them off my engine deck. Break. Be advised, actual is marking navpoints on the BMS map now.", Serrat said directly to the 1-800 Get Some Help as Loupes started moving to the first navpoint, sticking to a roundabout path in the defilade of the hills.


Serrat tapped his console to put the Active Protection System on safe but cursed when the status light for the system remained a stubborn green. Muttering under his breath, Serrat flipped a breaker on the board to his right. The light flickered, went red, and then went off.


"APS is off boys, no magic shield for us while the footies are humping it behind us."


Pal grinned.


"Pffft, APSs are for pussies anyway. Who needs a save roll when I'll drop 'em faster than they can roll a D20", Pal boasted.


Serrat couldn't help but smirk. He knew Pal was fucking terrified but kept up an act for the kid driver and the 'terp in the jumpseat, both of which looked like they were about to vomit.

The Cat and the 1-800 rolled forward no further than 300 metres northeast when they came to a stop, idling beside a hill with a network of cobbled fences.

Serrat unbuttoned his hatch and motioned for a squad of prone 'stani infantrymen to board the engine deck. The Cat's idling engine was whisper-quiet for an MBT, allowing Serrat to give some hasty instructions. He motioned and gestured for them to grab onto the grunt rails on the deck anyway - for those that couldn't understand Anglish or Iberic. Serrat also ensured that the squad leader knew where the tank telephone was, inside a housing box painted like the TURDIS*.

*Dr Howe, an Anglish science-fantasy TV drama ran from the 60's up to the early 2000's. Its Iberic dubs became exceedingly popular among the diaspora countries. The TURDIS refers to the eponymous Doctor's fictional hybrid of the time machine and spacecraft which was disguised as an old-fashioned public toilet cubicle.

Serrat lowered his seat to eyeball defilade but kept the hatch open. He was about to give the order to move when the 'terp tapped him on the elbow. Serrat looked down from his perch. Holm, Lucas, looked back.


"Err- Teniente Serrat, perhaps you would allow me to post-up with the Karoliner boys? I am the most senior NCO here and I have seen fighting with the infantry. Maybe I can... help ease comms?"


Serrat stared back at Holm. The 30-something vet looked a mix of hopeful and queasy like he was asking for a royal pardon. It was clear he'd rather be up there, exposed, unarmoured, and surrounded by flying shrapnel than spend another minute in the tank.


"Go", Serrat nodded, squeezing out of his station so the 'terp could exit.


Holm looked like he was about to pass out from gratitude.

As the tall man wriggled out of his hatch to join the infantry on the back, Serrat resumed his seat and gave the word.


"Driver-up. Gunner, clear the breech. HEAT is indexed"


Pal grumbled as he began the laborious process of unloading the sabot in the gun. The moment the round was stowed safely in the rear ready-rack and Pal was back in his seat, the autoloader readied and rammed a HEAT round into the gun.

From his hatch-open position, eyeballs peering just over the lip of his cupola, Serrat ordered Loupes and the 1-800 to advance. The pair of tanks, now with a platoon's worth of infantry split between both like limpets on a ship, drove around and into the fray.





Sector North: Karoliner overwatch elements rain recoilless rifle fire from the high slopes. Drabant engages the rear elements with massed ATGM fire. Brigands 1 & 2 stand by to assault and secure.



Interpreter - FJK. Lucas Holm


Fanjunkare Lucas Holm didn't really understand what the tank was doing, other than the gun firing and the breech recoiling with frightening force. He squished himself against where his tiny jumpseat met the turret cage of the tank and clutched his service carbine with a death grip. When the APS warning alarm went off he thought they were all going to die for sure. Alarms were bad right? But they didn't die and the unfamiliar sound mixed with the claustrophobia of metal continued. Lucas actually wasn't sure - maybe death was preferable.

When the Lieutenant- Teniente- whatever, accepted his offer to go out and help, he'd felt a wash of relief - so much so that he'd just about gasped as he squirmed his way out of the commander's hatch. The tank, Lucas decided, had been made for tiny people. Like the Ivericans. Not the taller and stouter men of Nyanta. He never liked metal boxes, not even APCs.

The Karoliner infantry platoon was led by a junior officer and an NCO, split between the two tanks the platoon rode atop of. The Battle Cat had the officer, who seemed agreeable enough - actually, the man was probably relieved to have another Nyantastani NCO to help his command. The rest of the enlisted seemed to either tolerate or welcome his presence, asking him a flurry of questions as he grabbed a grunt rail to hold on to.

What was inside the tank? Was there food? Was it heated? Were there reclining chairs? A gaming console?

Lucas surmised that the men, most of whom were fairly young, were deflecting their anxiety through babbling. They quieted down the moment the tank lurched forward, banking around the hill and approaching the shoulder of the highway.

They could see the smoke against the purple and deep blue of the coming night. The noise, already a terrible din from further away, rose to the point where it was all they could hear. Main guns boomed while autocannons bellowed. The popping clatter of machine guns and projectiles breaking the sound barrier echoed all about the valley. The Cat and the 1-800 with their infantry passengers were driving up to the road. Ahead on the left was a steep slope, effectively a cliff. On the right, where the land dipped, was where Lucas knew a small lake was nestled.

They passed the smouldering wrecks of the enemy vanguard. One IFV had been blown messily in 2 pieces. All over, the green grass that had carpeted the fields adjacent had been scorched black and brown by the mines and fires. Dead men in Ulfan uniforms littered the highway in various macabre positions and poses. Most were half-burned, others were in various arrangements of missing limbs - likely by high calibre machine gun rounds. As the Cat rode over a blackened corpse, Lucas had expected a smear of blood to follow behind them. But as he looked on, alongside the curious eyes of the infantry clinging beside him, there was only a black mark of crushed ash.

Around the defeated platoons of armour, Nyantastani infantrymen milled about. Some set security while others finished up securing what few survivors there were. The occasional combat engineer checked a vehicle and its surroundings for unexploded ordnance.

If there was one memory that would stay with Lucas from the day, it would be a cluster of men huddled around a corpse that lay sprawled some 10 feet from a blackened T-72. A few had phones and cameras out. As the Cat rolled past, Lucas saw that the corpse had no top and no boots. At first Lucas thought it was the result of looting but one more look at the burned-out tank and Lucas realised that the ammo detonation had quite literally, knocked the man out of his boots and shirt. The corpse was perfectly whole, having no missing limbs. However, its chest appeared deflated in such a grotesque manner that Lucas recognised that death had come in the form of a shockwave - one strong enough to mess up his ribcage and liquefy his internal organs.

Lucas and the men on the tanks watched in awed silence, even as the din of battle loomed ever closer in the north. The roadshow of wasted meat and scrapped metal abruptly ended as they approached a curve in the road.

Brigand 3 was there, a unit of 4 Iverican IFVs, one of which had a few track segments knocked off its left-side runners. If Lucas had to guess, it appeared to have shaken a track during the turn, probably at high speed.

He saw commander Serrat lift himself higher in his cupola and wave at the lead IFV. They exchanged some radio messages and hand signals that Lucas didn't understand. Serrat turned to face Lucas, about to say something when a force rocked the entire tank backwards. Almost every man on the back, Lucas included, was thrown from the engine deck and onto the highway pavement.

Lucas saw Serrat, nearly knocked out of his cupola, scramble back in and shut the hatch. The Battle Cat fired, followed by 1-800 and the quickly retreating Brigand IFVs. The shockwave of the guns made wet stuff trickle down his nose, even as he picked up the nearest infantryman and hauled himself and the Karoliner squad to the left shoulder of the highway, ducking into a drain sump and going prone.



Gunner - SGT. Palvaen "Pal" Saxweiro


Motherfuckers had moved up on them. With all the debris, fire, and smoke, radar and optics hadn't detected whatever it was shooting at them. What felt like 3 or 4 tanks started shooting back from the smoke, likely pushing forward and out in an attempt to break the ambush deadlock. They weren't supposed to be up this far and this close to the bend in the highway. Brigand 3 should have been on the lookout for them.

The round had smacked clean into the Cat's mantlet like a sucker punch. The tank had rocked as the impacting round vaporised itself into particles of supercharged plasma against the Cat's composite armour. The force and whiplash had slammed Pal's face into his sighting device. It was probably HEAT because at this range even their shitty steel sabots stood a 50-50 chance of going through the UC-42s front.

The enemy was firing behind vehicle wreckage, ruined buildings, and foliage. Alarmed chatter came from Bad Boy 2, 1-3, and 1-4, reporting an inability to identify and engage. Battle Cat and 1-800 were on their own. Only 2 tanks protecting the infantry and thin-skin IFVs with them.

Pal was struck with a second of worry as he realised Serrat had been unbuttoned and half out of the cupola but shook it off as he placed his aching face back into the gun sight.

Not waiting for orders, he modulated his thermals, seeking a clear contrast picture as he grit his teeth and turned the sensitivity dial. Loupes, to the boy's credit, had managed to get them on the move, albeit somewhat jerkily and clumsily.


"There you are, you shit-munching pube flosser", he muttered as the digital thermals filtered out the over-intense sig of the fires. A silhouette. Tank. Its turret was tracking them as Loupes drove in reverse, trying to get some cover in the defile beside the highway.

"Eat shit", Pal hissed and squeezed the trigger on his stick. The breech recoiled.


The round was a blur as it flew, hitting somewhere along the turret face a millisecond later. The 1-800, keeping pace with the Cat, miraculously still in formation, fired too - and missed by a hair.


"Doubtful. Again! Index Sabot!", shouted Serrat, struggling back inside the tank.


Pal quelled an upwelling of relief as Serrat slipped back into his station and buttoned up the tank. Pal heard the cough of the countermeasure launchers firing as another cloud of smoke and reflective filament went up in front of them, obstructing the view.

The gun reloaded and Pal sent a sabot down range, firing blindly through the smoke, nothing but instinct on the target's last known guiding him.


"Target! Next one, next one! Traverse right"


-the autoloader rattled and clattered.


"Driver, keep moving back!", Serrat ordered.


Another round came twisting out of the smoke, ripping the curtain of fog. It went just short, demolishing a gas station sign behind the pair of tanks and the handful of IFVs. The T-72s blind shooting opened up gaps in the smoke. Pal could just about see the white-hot glow of an enemy gun.

-the bulkhead hatch clanged open and lined up a new round.

Another incoming shell whipped past and just about caressed the skirts of the Cat.


"FUCK!", cried Pal and Loupes in unison.


Pal felt the tank drop and slide a little as Loupes took them into the defile on the highway's right shoulder. Pal fought to keep his reticule on target, the fire control system wasn't auto-tracking the T-72 with all the data noise coming in. He could feel the stabilisers beneath the gun beside him heating up as they hummed and hissed, doing their best to keep the gun from jerking around.

-the new round emerged from storage. The rammer arm shot forward.


"Driver! Up! Up! Along the defile", shouted Serrat. The tank lurched as the CVT transmission cycled forward suddenly, the tank skidding on its tracks by the sudden change in traction. They rode forward, coming up around their own fired countermeasure smoke. The turret whined as it smoothly traversed left.


-the breech slammed shut. The light went green.


"ON! FIRE!", Serrat roared.

"ON THE WAY, MOTHERFUCKER!", Pal shouted, feeling his spittle fly.


The sabot slammed dead centre. Pal thought he saw it slip right into the turret ring. A split second later, a jet of fire erupted from the top hatches and gun muzzle.


"Target!", right, traverse right, identify tank! Driver, back!", Serrat shouted.


The 1-800 fired beside them, aiming at something else in the smoke. Their sister tank fired and immediately tore back in full reverse.


"I'm looking! Am I on?!", Pal asked, aiming for a hot silhouette.

"Neg! Ease right, 040, about 2 o'clock. Wait for my word!", Serrat called out, matching his display to mirror Pal's.


The Cat and 1-800 rolled back in a staggered pair, before stopping as Serrat ordered them forward again, edging further away from the highway.


"Slow traverse. Keep going, keep going... On! Fire!", Serrat called.


Pal had just a second to identify the shape of a T-72 snuggled between 2 wrecked vehicles.


"Identified! On the Way!"


The gun recoiled. Pal watched in horror as his round hit one of the wrecks, sending debris and fragments all around.


"Short, right! Again! Driver, back!", Serrat shouted.

"Come-on-come-on-come-on!", Pal spat as the autoloader cycled. He watched as the enemy tank steadied its muzzle and lined up a shot.


Pal's thought just then was, "It would suck to die before I score any foreign puss".



Interpreter - FJK. Lucas Holm


If it weren't for his ear protection, he'd be deaf. Lucas crawled forward in the rain sump next to the highway pavement, a defile trench that ran parallel to the road. The platoon leader, the juniour officer from earlier, was nowhere to be found. Lucas had a fleeting thought that the boy was probably a fine splatter against the Battle Cat, vapourised by plasma particles when they took the hit.

He'd had no choice but to take command of the platoon himself, being the senior-most NCO. Quickly he mustered those who had stayed in cohesion and rallied them. Years of infantry foot-slogging in border skirmishes taught him one thing:

Attack. Attack. Attack.

A force on the ropes could not afford to lose tempo or aggression. So he formed the platoon into a skirmish line and had them move prone along the scant defilade cover they had and pushed forward.

On the highway to his right, he could hear the Cat and the 1-800 firing, their massive main guns booming like giant hammer-strikes on leviathan anvils. In response, the Ulfan T-72s on the other side drummed their replies, the rounds whistling or shrieking less than 20 metres away. He could hear the squeal and clatter of their rubber-metal treads as they manoeuvred and kept fighting. If death came, at least he'd be on his feet and not cooped up in a metal coffin.

They crawled forward as quickly as they could, scrambling to reached a small cluster of ruined buildings where the road banked left. Over the radio, he kept Serrat updated of his position and their formation description. It would really, really suck to be blue-on-blue'd* right now.

*Blue-on-blue - friendly fire.

The skirmish line got into a crouch. He had some rifles take positions on the corners of the buildings while the rest did a quick breach and clear. AT men carrying Gustav tubes came in last. Lucas had taken one himself, from a man who had fractured his arm when they had been thrown from the Cat's deck.


"Holm, what's that status on that infantry support? Bad Boy is pushing up to engage", Serrat came in on the radio.

"1-1 actual, we are setting up now. 1-mike."

"Make that now, Holm!"


Lucas ran up the stairs of the ruined 2-storey, slipping a HEAT round into his Gustav's tube and sealing it. He took to a crouch at a shell hole in the wall. The man that had come up with him was already looking through a set of rangefinders, giving him bearing, range, and description of the closest target. A T-72 - and it was lining up a shot on the Cat.

Lucas got to a crouch, ranged the sight and braced the tube.


"BACKBLAST AREA CLEAR!", his partner shouted.


 He exhaled, ensuring his mouth was open to prepare for the pressure blast.




The tube spat, shooting out hot gas from the vents behind it. 3 other Gustavs in the platoon fired, dust flying from every opening of the ruined buildings they were in. Two rounds went short but Holm's and another aimed true, striking the beast in the turret and the hull. The beast appeared stunned and seemed to freeze, its muzzle still trained on the Battle Cat.

The scant few seconds Lucas bought was all that was needed.

The 1-800 peeked out from beside the reversing Battle Cat and fired sabot. The super-velocity uranium-cored round left a flaming hole as bits of it turned to plasma on entry. Through the smoke, Lucas could see several shapes crawl and fall out of hatches. The beast was dead.





How did the Cat and the 1-800 get attacked? It's quite unlikely that 3-4 MBTs would have made it that far up the line given coverage from left, right, and front. However, we can make our own guys fairly blind so we can get the good money shots. 

Why are the enemy so bunched up? In Nyanta's previous post, his infiltrators run interference and sabotage to screw with the enemy time table and spacing. It essentially forced them into a minor traffic jam.

How did the Cat survive getting bonked at close range? Hit by a fairly old HEAT round at close range on the gun mantlet - the thickest part of the tank. The APS was off because there was friendly infantry nearby. Had it been on, it would likely have killed a number of them.

What's with the terminology? Most of the tank comms are based on real protocol used by US Army tank units. I've customised and added a bit given the vast differences in weapon systems. I've also cut down some of the more superfluous Receiver-Sender-Message-Closing words to prevent bloating. This post is already phat as fuk as it is.

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  • 2 weeks later...

The Lions Roar

A ringing in the ears. The smell of black powder, burnt meat and smoke rises to the nose. Reflexively, the young soldier tries to cough, but his dry throat won't even allow that. His head is heavy and his right eye is glued shut. But he does not want to know what caused it. When he looks up he sees his friends and brothers. They are being pinned down by a hellish sound. The 12.7 mm of the Iverican tanks shred friends without pause. The young man tries to scream. To help them. TAKES COVER. TAKES COVER. But they do not hear. He does not even hear himself. Blood is leaking from his ears. His eyelids grow heavy. And the wurld slowly goes black. Like so many before and after him. He will be remembered only as a number on a piece of paper. The person. The person. He no longer exists. And those who can remember him lie there. Beside him. Their cold eyes stare at the sky. War knows only losers.

In the Reserves of the Ulfheimr Troops

Sergents and captains are yelling over the radio trying to save the day. The troops are confused and beside themselves. During the commotion, Ayre has retreated with Ingram and Hannes into the nearby forest.  Ayre observes the chaos sitting on a tree trunk while Ingram and Hannes make use of the stolen radio. Ayre smiles wearily despite being trapped, Gragas somehow manages to regroup the remaining Ulfheimr with his captains. How ironic... Ayre is jolted out of his thoughts by Hannes. 

"All set. We should have a secure connection now. Ingram has already picked out the coordinates" as Ayre looks to Ingram he is just stuffing a map and some GPS equipment back into his backpack.


 Ayre just nods to Hannes and continues to watch the action. In the rush no one has noticed that the 3 have disappeared. Or that a radio is missing. At the moment, tanks and troop carriers are shunting back and forth to form up for a counterattack. Like a chicken without a head. But the experienced SpecOp also knows that the confusion will not last long. And Gragas is quite a competent commander.  In the background he hears Ingram on the radio 




"We should get to more cover. Before the Lions Start Roaring." Ayre says and Hannes slings the radio over his Shoulders. At a brisk pace the 3 run towards the mountain, putting 100-200-300-350 meters between themselves and their old friends.


Fire Direction Control, 13th "Thunder Gods" Field Artillery Brigade


Well ordered but with an incredible speed the order to fire is given. Calculated and ordered the artillery fire. The goal is not suppression, but total destruction. "By Saint Octavias heaving Bossom.** Can you belive they made it? Even got Precise Coordinates for Artillery fire. They wont know what hit them." The Main Gunner Comments with a big Grin. "Focus on alignment. We need to be quick. Before they move."  The Section Chief admonishes him. And already everyone is in their rhythm. Since this is a good possibility, the FDC has given coordinates to all artillery battalions. For the greatest possible damage and moment of surprise. If the fire is coordinated so that all batteries fire almost simultaneously. 30 seconds left....20.......





One hears the roar of the lions as the Nyantastani have baptized their artillery even almost into the forest. Hundreds of guns scream with only one goal. The destruction of the enemy.  Ayre and Hannes turn around. They hear the howling of the shells falling from the sky. Scattered cries of warning. But before anything can be understood, the ground shakes. One explosion follows the next. Hannes and Ayre have to cover their ears and close their eyes to avoid going completely deaf or blind. Ingram pulls them behind the slope they have reached. After a few seconds Ingram peeks over the slope with binoculars and grabs the radio again. Now it's time to specify the fire. The chaos is unbelievable. People fly through the air like dolls. Tanks burst like balloons. The ground cracks and burns. Hell has now also reached the reserves.

*Based on Real Forward Observer calls in the US Military and to an Extend Nato. Altered and heavily Modified.
**Basically Jesus fckn Christ. Maybe more on that in a Future Iwiki Post ;)

(OOC: I deliberately started the post with an "anti-war picture". I think more competent writers could have done better. I just want to show and remind us all here again that war knows no winners. You can only lose there is no good or evil. Only death and destruction. In war we lose friends and family. And it is the worst thing that mankind has brought forth. This is not a moral sermon but I think it is important that we remember how terrible war is.)

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  • 1 month later...

How the Lion of the North earned her Title

End of the Ambush

13th Field Artillery Brigade

Still giving the Ulfheimrs hell.

"We cease fire in 5 minutes! We will start, and the other batteries will follow in 30 second intervals. This way our troops still have enough cover" the section chief says before continuing his duties. 
"So what you say is true?"  Starts the Main Gunner asking as soon as the Chief was out of earshot. "Yeah, I heard she brought her own Karoliner" answers one of the crew while the next one almost interrupts him "So it's really her? The crazy b*tch? I hear the guys who serve under her are just as bad off as the Special Forces." The crew murmurs in agreement. "A colleague of mine got transferred to her battalion, the training is even WORSE than Queens Ranger wing. And that's saying something." He pauses briefly, struggling to reveal the next part really, "She seems really popular with them though. She's not afraid to be in the Thick of it." In a rage, one of the loaders interjects, "What not Afraid! Remember the drill before the war. The b*tch came at us with a sabre! WITH A SABER! And she laughed while doing it. I don't want to be on the other side. She's crazy" Some of the crew nodded, others shook their heads, "You can't deny that she's tactically gifted. Heard from a friend in 17th that she's been testing all this shit for a month. Her Karoliner can now rappel down a helicopter in their sleep." The Main Gunner frowns, "Who else said she was popular with her men? The woman is a beast. I mean, who's lucky enough to practice so much all at once, and then without being told what for?" The muscular man spits on the floor in disgust. "Who knows, they will celebrate her as a lion" says another with a slightly trembling voice. Because Johann knows what happens once the Main Gunner gets really worked up. "PAH because of her hair and the sabre or what? Fangs and mane that I do not....." Before the sentence could be finished, the Section Chief appears behind the Main Gunner. "I SAID IN 5 MINUTES. ON THE GUN! HURRY!"

An airfield not far from the front line

A woman in blue parade uniform stands on the airfield and leans on her saber. The wind blows through her long blond hair, while the last rays of the sun give her honey-colored eyes an unnatural glow. Behind her, soldiers prepare for battle. The ammunition is checked and the Hueys run warm. In a single movement, she turns around. The cloak of her uniform blows in the wind. The shadow she casts is almost as large as her presence. Although the woman is by far not the tallest person at 185 cm, it feels like standing in front of a giant beast every time. Her words easily carried across the airfield. With such a power behind them as if the woman would scream. "The attack will begin in a few minutes. We will eliminate the rest of the opponents and break the Ulfheimers once and for all." A faint smile showed on her otherwise stoic face, but it was gone as quickly as it showed up. "You are my Karoliner You are the best of the best. Your discipline brings us victory!" Cheers followed the statement before she concluded the speech. "Karoliner! Mount!"


The Lions Karoliner (POV)
The equipment is checked one last time before you get into the helicopter. The two gunners nod at you. Inspired by the words of the lioness, you confidently look around you. Your comrades are also ready to go to their deaths for this woman. But today there will be no casualties. You have trained. You can rappel from a helicopter in the dark. And the shock tactics with which you attack would make even special forces envious. Suddenly you feel a cold draft. The lioness is standing in your helicopter. Saber at her hip, revolver in her left hand. With her right hand she holds on to the upper mount. Her blue uniform with silver decorations flutters in the wind of the rotors. This time there is clearly a smile on her face. You have seen this smile many times before. In drills and training but never like this… you're looking for the right words.. As sincere as if she was seeing the love of her life and not going to war. Slowly you fly towards the forest and you check your night vision. Disciplined you stand up and get ready for battle. The last shots of artillery fire echo in the valley. The time has come. You clutch your weapon with confidence and pick up a grenade.

Behind Enemy lines

Ayre wonders for a moment why the effective artillery fire stops before he hears the faint sound of a rotor. The Ulfheimers still seem to be busy gathering themselves. Many wounded are screaming and calling for help. The survivors take cover behind the wreckage of tanks, but no one has noticed that they are about to meet the most professional and effective part of the army. The lioness and her troops are here. The queen of the battlefield. Ayre shakes himself, for a moment he feels sorry for the Ulfheimers. Ingram and Hannes also see the whole thing similarly. After a short agreement, the 3 withdraw for the time being. And support only if necessary.


Exactly 5 minutes later. On the second the lioness reaches her battlefield. With a smooth movement, her saber leaves its scabbard. The last rays of the sun bounce off the polished steel, giving the woman a hellish aura. "Karoliner! Dismount!" The helicopters slowly descend. The troops rappel in a flurry while the gunners give suppressive fire. The lioness' helicopter hovers just 1 meter above the ground. With a leap she leaves the helicopter which immediately rises again into the air. "Karoliner! gå-på" The Karoliner form their attack squads and let grenades fly with a shout. The gunners cease fire and within a few seconds only the silhouette of the saber-wielding leader is visible in the smoke.

The Lions Karoliner (POV)

You advance with incredible speed and discipline, as trained. One volley after the other follows. Your squad is close behind your leader. Each shot hits a target. Each grenade allows another squad to advance at incredible speed. An unstoppable wall of soldiers advances step by step towards the Ulfheimers. Behind you, you hear a noise and you immediately swing in its direction. Finger on the trigger and the rifle at eye level. The pistol of a severely wounded Ulfheimr suddenly presses against your chest. f*ck! That's the last thought you'll have. Should have. But you can't quite believe your eyes. Out of nowhere, the hand and the weapon fly into the air. And the lioness stands before you. She nods to you once before turning around. She places her foot on the belly of the wounded man and looks him in the eye before killing him with surgical precision, a faint smile on her lips. You watch as she pushes soldiers back with precise shots and marches towards them with her sword drawn. One by one they are cut down or felled by a bullet from her weapon. For a moment you stand there a bit perplexed, is this really real? Between the flames and the dead? You don't have much time to collect your thoughts. You continue to advance. The rest of your squad has already moved on. Metodically and without mercy, one Ulfheimer after another is eliminated.

Ayre,Hannes und Ingram

They watched the commotion. There was no other way to call it. The disciplined shock tactics of the Karoliner moved like an an unstoppable wave over the undisciplined and confused Ulfheimr. As if they were Fueld by the Fear in there enemies eyes. Without consideration the Ulfheimers were eliminated. Never more shots than necessary. Precise, methodical, heartless. That's what war was like, Ingram thought. The boy was mostly optimistic and idealistic. But even he could not resist the cynical thought. That this was a necessary step. Karoliner marching through flames, extinguishing all life like demons. And a commander who with a smile, cut down one after the other. He knew it wouldn't be a week before she got a great title from the press. But Ingram also knew that she was now the beast of her country. The beast of the battlefield. Our lioness but for the opponents Ammit Devoureress of the Dead. Ingram nodded. Fitting title for her. Ingram was torn from his thoughts by a final explosion. All that could be heard was the quiet banter of soldiers after a battle. When the three ventured out of their hiding place and ran down the mountainside. He could not believe his eyes. The lioness was talking to her troops with a sincere smile. She praised them for not losing anyone. Ingram looked around again in disbelief. But it was true. No Nyantastani had died today. The three of them joined her and came forward. "Ahhhh, this wouldn't have been possible without you." The lioness smiled diabolically. For a moment, Ingram could swear that the lioness's markless teeth were fangs. But that couldn't be true. "Yes, ma'am," Ayre replied without hesitation. "Very well. Then we'll take you with us. The others can clean up" Ingram, Hannes and Ayre nodded. Glad to have survived their mission alive. And Ingram was convinced they just witnessed the making of a National Hero.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Ambush Epilogue
Rest whilst you can brave souls

Amidst the aftermath of a hard-fought battle, the victorious soldiers of Nyantastan embarked on their journey back to base. Riding in helicopters, they soared above the war-torn landscape, their hearts brimming with relief and pride. Their leader, the Lioness of the North, stood tall among them, a remarkable sight with her flowing golden hair and honey-colored eyes.

The Lioness had earned her title through extraordinary leadership, guiding her troops to an amazing victory in an ambush. Her regiment, the Karoliens, Nyantastan's best infantry, played a pivotal role in the battle. With their disciplined ranks and unmatched combat skills, they fought with unwavering determination, ensuring the destruction of multiple tank battalions.

As the helicopters cut through the air, the soldiers filled the space with banter and laughter, celebrating their triumph. The Lioness, ever humble, joined in the merriment, relishing the camaraderie forged on the battlefield. Among them were Arye, Hannes, and Ingram, three soldiers who had undertaken a daring mission behind enemy lines and returned victorious. Their presence filled the hearts of their comrades with pride.

The journey back to the base was filled with tales of bravery and camaraderie, with the Lioness and her Karoliens at the center of attention. Their synchronized movements and expert precision had struck fear into the enemy forces, shattering their formations and securing the path to victory.

As the helicopters touched down on the landing pad, the soldiers disembarked one by one, their spirits high. The campsite, adorned with flags  of Nyantastan, was alive with activity. The Lioness, her sword at her side, stepped onto solid ground, commanding respect with her mere presence. Her Karoliens stood tall, ready to follow her lead once more.

The base buzzed with celebration as the soldiers recounted their triumph. The story of the Lioness and her courageous warriors spread like wildfire, inspiring hope and renewed determination among the ranks. Nyantastan's victory seemed within reach, and the soldiers knew their relentless efforts were paying off.

In the heart of the camp, a feast was prepared to honor the returning heroes. Amidst laughter and cheers, the Lioness raised a toast to Arye, Hannes, and Ingram, praising their unwavering loyalty and bravery. They were symbols of the indomitable spirit of Nyantastan's soldiers.

As night fell, the soldiers reveled in the joyous atmosphere, temporarily forgetting their fatigue. They danced, sang, and shared stories of battles fought and victories won. Their bond grew stronger, forged through shared hardships and triumphs.

Amidst the festivities, the Lioness took a moment to reflect. She knew that the war was far from over, but with each victory, Nyantastan drew closer to triumph over Ulfheimr. With renewed determination, she pledged to lead her troops to further victories until the day her nation emerged victorious.

And so, with hearts brimming with hope and the memory of their recent victory, the soldiers of Nyantastan continued their relentless pursuit of peace and freedom. Guided by their fearless leader, the Lioness of the North, they marched forward, ready to face the challenges that lay ahead, united in their unwavering resolve to secure their nation's ultimate triumph.

Amidst the celebration in the base camp, news quickly spread that the Lioness of the North, along with her esteemed Karoliens, would be summoned to a special meeting with the highest-ranking officials of Nyantastan's military. Chancellor Nyanta Akamura, the Commander in Chief, and Field Marshal John Sterling awaited her arrival to personally convey their congratulations and discuss a well-deserved promotion.

2 Weeks Later

In a serene office adorned with maps and military insignia, Chancellor Akamura and Field Marshal Sterling sat behind an imposing desk, anticipation etched on their faces. The door swung open, and the Lioness of the North entered, her presence commanding respect and admiration. She greeted them with a nod, her honey-colored eyes gleaming with a mix of pride and humility.

The Chancellor and Field Marshal rose from their seats, acknowledging the Lioness's exceptional leadership and bravery. They spoke of her remarkable achievements, emphasizing the impact she had made on the war effort and the inspiration she had become to soldiers across Nyantastan. As the room filled with words of praise, the Lioness listened with a blend of gratitude and modesty.

Deep down, the Lioness of the North remained a humble warrior, despite her impressive accolades and the recognition bestowed upon her. She never sought personal glory or reveled in the limelight. Instead, her focus remained firmly on the well-being of her troops and the success of Nyantastan's mission. Her humble demeanor and genuine concern for her comrades endeared her to those who served under her.

However, once she stepped onto the field of battle, a transformation occurred. The Lioness became a force to be reckoned with—a war machine, a one-person army. Every movement was calculated, every strike precise, as she unleashed her full potential. She fought with the ferocity of a lioness protecting her cubs, her sword glinting with deadly intent.

In the chaos of battle, the Lioness thrived. She exhibited a keen tactical mind, swiftly analyzing the ever-shifting landscape of warfare and making split-second decisions that turned the tides in Nyantastan's favor. Her battlefield instincts were unparalleled, and her ability to adapt to any situation made her an exceptional leader.

Soldiers who fought alongside her witnessed her unmatched skill and ferocious determination firsthand. She led by example, charging headlong into the fray with unwavering courage, her presence inspiring those around her to push beyond their limits. Despite her individual prowess, she never lost sight of the collective effort required for victory.

Even as a one-person army, the Lioness recognized the importance of teamwork and cohesion. She understood that triumph on the battlefield was not achieved by a single warrior but by the combined might of a united force. And so, she tirelessly trained her troops, instilling in them the values of discipline, camaraderie, and unwavering loyalty.

Her soldiers admired her for this duality—the humble woman who cared for their well-being off the battlefield and the fierce leader who commanded their respect on it. They knew that in her hands, their chances of success were maximized, for she had proven time and again that she would never abandon them, no matter the odds.

As Chancellor Akamura and Field Marshal Sterling continued to express their admiration, the Lioness's thoughts began to drift. She recalled the faces of her Karoliens, the soldiers who had fought tirelessly by her side. The camaraderie they shared, the unbreakable bond formed through blood, sweat, and tears—it was their triumph, their collective achievement.

When the Chancellor and Field Marshal finally revealed the nature of the meeting—to bestow upon her the rank of General, a promotion that elevated her to the highest echelons of the military—the Lioness's heart swelled with a mix of emotions. Pride surged within her, for she knew this recognition was a testament to the blood, sweat, and tears shed by her and her troops. Yet, in the depths of her being, she remained the humble leader who sought no personal glory.

Accepting the promotion with grace, the Lioness acknowledged the trust placed in her and the honor bestowed upon her shoulders. She recognized the weight of her new responsibilities and the expectations that came with them. For her, it was not a triumph for herself alone but a testament to the unwavering dedication and sacrifices made by every soldier in Nyantastan's army.

As the meeting concluded, the Lioness exited the office, her mind brimming with thoughts of the battles yet to be fought and the soldiers who relied on her leadership. The promotion was a testament to their collective achievements, a reminder of the challenges that lay ahead.

Proud but humble, the Lioness of the North took a moment to collect herself before rejoining her troops. She understood that with the new rank came a greater burden, but she was determined to lead her soldiers with the same fierce determination and unwavering spirit that had brought them this far.

And so, as the Lioness returned to her comrades, she carried the weight of her promotion with humility, vowing to continue guiding her troops with the same indomitable spirit and unwavering loyalty. For her, the promotion was not an end in itself, but a reminder of the responsibility she held—to protect her nation, to safeguard her comrades, and to forge a path toward a brighter future for Nyantastan.

While the Lioness of the North was revered and respected by her own troops, there were whispers and rumors among the rest of the army. Some outside her regiment misunderstood her fierce determination on the battlefield, branding her a "crazy b*tch" who relished in the slaughter. They couldn't comprehend why her troops held her in such high regard.

These rumors circulated like wildfire, causing confusion and curiosity among the soldiers who had never witnessed her leadership firsthand. They struggled to reconcile the contrasting tales of her exceptional battlefield prowess with the anecdotes of her troops' unwavering loyalty and admiration.

The truth, however, was far from the rumors that swirled in the air. The Lioness was not driven by a bloodlust or a desire for mindless slaughter. Her passion lay in protecting her nation and ensuring the safety of her comrades. She fought with unmatched intensity and determination, channeling her energy into calculated strikes that aimed to neutralize the enemy swiftly and decisively.

To those who truly knew her, the Lioness was a leader who inspired unwavering trust and respect. Her troops had witnessed her selflessness, her unwavering dedication to their well-being, and her willingness to put herself in harm's way to ensure their survival. They had experienced her compassion and the genuine concern she showed for each and every one of them. She fought not for personal glory, but to safeguard the lives of those under her command.

As the rumors persisted, the Lioness remained unfazed. She knew that actions spoke louder than words. Instead of wasting time and energy on refuting baseless claims, she focused on leading her troops with unwavering conviction, leading by example, and proving her mettle on the battlefield.

Slowly, over time, some soldiers from other units had the opportunity to witness the Lioness's leadership firsthand. They observed her unwavering resolve, her strategic brilliance, and her fierce loyalty to her comrades. These soldiers began to question the rumors and reassess their initial judgments.

Gradually, perceptions shifted. The tales of a "crazy b*tch" began to be replaced with stories of an extraordinary leader—a warrior who fought not out of bloodlust, but out of an unyielding desire to protect her nation and ensure the safety of her troops. As more soldiers came to understand her true character, they started to appreciate the deep bond forged between the Lioness and her Karoliens.

In time, the rumors faded away, replaced by a growing respect and admiration for the Lioness of the North. Soldiers across Nyantastan's army began to comprehend the reasons behind her troops' unwavering loyalty. They realized that it was not blind devotion to a bloodthirsty leader but rather an unwavering faith in a commander who would always put their lives above all else.

The Lioness, though aware of the rumors that had once clouded her reputation, never allowed them to deter her from her mission. She focused on leading her troops, proving her worth through actions rather than words. And as the war continued, her true character shone brighter than any malicious gossip, earning her the respect and admiration of all who fought alongside her.

Amidst the accolades and the lingering whispers of the past, the Lioness remained steadfast in her dedication to her troops and her nation. She knew that her true legacy would not be defined by rumors or titles, but by the lives she had saved, the battles she had won, and the indomitable spirit she had instilled in her comrades.

And so, the Lioness of the North marched forward, sword in hand, a beacon of hope and unwavering resolve. Her journey continued, fueled by the unwavering support of her troops and her unwavering commitment to the cause. For in her heart, she knew that the greatest victory was yet to come—a victory that would secure the freedom and prosperity of Nyantastan the March on the Capital of Ulfheimr. 

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