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Old July 4th, 2020, 08:28 AM
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Post The Battle of Orraerz

The Battle of Orraerz

Of 1097

What sets the Battle of Orraerz, after Orraerz (Gzaekfueg 2528) C946556-A Ag Ni 804 {1} (946+1) [454C] F6 V VRo5 apart from the many other engagements between the Ruler of Five Urzaeng and the Third Empire of Gashikan was a surprise to both polities. This battle over Orraerz had its causes not on the mainworld or in-system. The sparking issues began on Aro (Gzaekfueg 2629) in Siigikhakma Subsector. An immense surge in smuggling and piracy was detected by the early warning Scout ships of the Third Empire of Gashikan very early in the year and was reported to the Scout Base on Eu (Gzaekfueg 2727) which relayed the gathered data to the subsector capital on Oureslot (Gzaekfueg 2925). The Waystation shared its information with both the Navy and the local Charismatic Dictator simultaneously in the event that one or the other censored the information received.

While the Urzaeng Merchants conducting the smuggling across the non-aligned world were not aware of the spying Gashikan Scouts, the Corsairs out of Soru (Gzaekfueg 2227) were watching Aro for prey from either the Ruler of Five or the Gashikans. While the pirates were initially unconcerned at the presence of Gashikan Scouts, it was the timing of their departure in relation to the local smuggling operations that tipped off the Corsairs. Rather than call out the smugglers, the Scouts jumped from the system with a vector to Wigho (Gzaekfueg 2828). The Corsairs then knew that the Scouts were engaged in surveillance rather than policing the borders of the Empire. An idea came to the Corsair captain, a shrewd and grizzled Urzaeng male named Gvarrksae Kan. He decided to open the way for the Corsair bands a little by exaggerating the Scouts activities in Aro system and returned to Soru by way of Ongnonggors. At each stop, the Captain let the exaggerated rumor fly that the Gashikans were targeting Low-Population Aro for the Empire Navy to invade within the year. He hoped that the rumor would spread and cause the Ruler of Five Navy to eventually beef up border security at Orraerz the only other peninsula world other than the Jump-1 bridge further coreward that linked the two polities in a controlled and armistice standoff. As the rumor mill churned on this information, the Corsair Captain sold the intelligence he had recorded directly to the Naval office on Soru for the Base located on Seuo (Gzaekfueg 1827). It was his hope that tempers would flare enough that border security would trump the need for policing the trade routes through Reofhunkdzo’s and ‘soenk Subsectors. The Captain went so far as to sell this recorded intel to adjacent Corsair bands immediately spinward. This set an avalanche of out of proportion rumor backed by a few recordings of Scout vessels.

As the Urzaeng rumors spread in the Ruler of Five, the powers over Ourselot were unable to check themselves because of the break in intel protocol enacted by the Scouts. More than a few Scouts lost their jobs and were summarily dismissed on charges of zealous warmongering. But the damage was done. The Empire Navy leaked the smuggling operations on Aro to the public which caused an outcry among the labor groups who were losing money to illegal smuggling, tax evasion and a decrease in sales. The actual numbers were ineffectual against the emotions that ran high against the Vargr to spinward. The space wolves dared to cross into Gashikan space and steal business under the noses of the Naval patrols.

Meanwhile, the three Church Worlds of Doudzo, Ueruenggoer and Llaedhue caught wind of the potential loss of Aro to the Humans to trailing. They began pushing the faithful warrior Urzaeng toward the border to pack as many Naval vessels with righteous Vargr as the Ruler of Five Navy would allow. The waves of rumors grew wilder as they washed back toward the border. Under charismatic pressures from the public, the special interest groups, and the government, the Ruler of Five began amassing the ‘soenk Subsector fleet at Orraerz, initially to “show the flag” there. If the Humans intended to strike the independent Naval Base of non-aligned Aro and siege the mainworld, the Ruler of Five stood ready to hold the border or respond should a distress call come from them. This too was seen and reported by spying Scouts out of Eu (Gzaekfueg 2727) who reported a military buildup on the Urzaeng border. These Scouts wanted to know what the Gashikans Navy intended to do about this new imaging collected at Orraerz.

The Navy, taking a cue from the Third Imperium, conscripted the Gashikan Scouts in Siigikhakhma Subsector and then with the permissions of the capital at Oureslot, began a move to Eu on the border. Both Waystations, one at Ourslot and adjacent Sheod (Gzaekfueg 2926) were emptied of Scouts on standby status. In less than three weeks, military and Scout vessels broke out of Jump Space, arriving at Eu.
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Old July 4th, 2020, 08:29 AM
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Having the initiative and fuel in their tanks, the Ruler of Five Navy spread out across the four Orraerz system Gas Giants. Any ships jumping in would need wilderness refueling if it had any hope of cutting off supply lines starting at Orraerz and ending at Aro.

Quietly and without telling the Ruler of Five, at least two Corsair bands sparked the Battle of Orraerz. Twenty ships jumped into Aro and dispatched fifteen attendant smallcraft to ambush the Human Scout ships still monitoring the situation. A small-scale battle occurred as Corsairs overtook as many of the light observation vessels as they could. However, three ships escaped, one of them being a long-range Scout, the Red Lotus, which jumped immediately to Eu to report to the Scout Base there. The other two, with shorter jump range, retreated to Wigho to give testimony. But the attack had been so swift, and the three ships prepared to jump, that no conclusive recordings of the attackers were identifiable. The ambush was mistaken for the Ruler of Five Navy. When the news hit the radio antennae of Eu, the Gashikan Navy acted.

It was Gashikan Navy intention to cut off the Ruler of Five fleet support by jumping to Orraerz instead. It was hoped that the Vargr would assume that the Humans would report directly to their position and hold a standoff there. But the combined fleet of Navy and Scouts leadership chose to put more than usual pressure on the Urzaeng. While they had no intention of sieging Orraerz, blockading the mainworld and the four Gas Giants there would cause the Ruler of Five some tail-tucking to return from Aro.

This chain of events caused the Gashikan Navy some surprise as they jumped from Eu to Orraerz and were suddenly caught by the combined main fleet of ‘soenk Subsector. And the Urzaeng were whipped into a frenzy for a fight confirmed by the jump flash of the Human ships. The Gashikans knew they had poor intel from the Scouts when they tried to refuel at the outermost Gas Giant and met the Vargr confederation fleet. Battle was enjoined without communications exchanges or offers to surrender. The Urzaeng, bolstered by Vargr Charisma and a chance to thwart a Human invasion from the Third Empire of Gashikan fanned the flames.

Because the Gashikans had the numbers and were concentrated on the outermost Gas Giant named Fuegorruegh <Ocean God>, the fourth of the Urzaeng fleets were initially overmatched by the Human Navy and conscripted Scouts. But the remainder fleet recalled the embattled battlegroup from the Gas Giant and the Urzaeng regrouped at the next Gas Giant in as the Gashikans began refueling their entire surprised fleet.

Rage-filled, the Urazaeng formed their smaller fleet and threw their vanguard at the Gashikans who by then had deployed all of their Scouts and smallcraft. A long battle would whittle away the Vargr at Orraerz but for another unique event that surprised both sides of the space over Fuegorruegh. Three Corsair bands from Reofhunkdzo’s and ‘soenk Subsectors arrived, including Vurrzo’s Bloodletters from distant Okhuemgir Subsector.

In exchange for salvage rights on the Human ships, the Corsairs led by the Vargr to spark the flames of the Battle of Orraerz, Captain Gvarrksae Kan won both a provisional pardon and a battlefield Letter of Marque to go with the salvage if they helped the Ruler of Five Navy against the Third Empire of Gashikan. Else, the Corsairs pointed out, the Humans could potentially cut deeper into ‘soenk Subsector and cut the Ruler of Five into two parts coreward and rimward and sever the Cyan trade route so valuable to the Urzaeng Vargr. The Vargr admiral agreed immediately as his flagship suffered a critical hit to its Jump Drive. The Navy was now committed.
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Old July 4th, 2020, 08:30 AM
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Listening in on this negotiation, the Gashikans Scouts relayed that they had been fooled by the Corsairs at Aro and were now in jeopardy. The Human fleet could defeat the Ruler of Five Navy but was now overmatched by 500-ton Vargr Corsairs when matched against the conscripted Scouts. But the Yileans would not back down, seeing they been herded by the space wolves.
The Battle of Orraerz was massive with tactical victories on both sides of the engagement. Scouts swarmed the Corsairs who drew them off from the main Gashikans fleet. A battle of attrition began to whittle both sides. Vargr charismatic glory stood against the hate of the proud Yileans. Wreckage began to litter the skies over Fuegorruegh.

The Gashikan flagship suffered a suicidal ramming action from a Vargr corvette that opened the hull and spun the exposed Power Plant to the barbette of a nearby frigate. A young gunner and pilot, Sub-lieutenant Zia Dhaie won her way in to glory by scoring a hit that silenced the Yilean Admiral’s weapons systems. She would later earn a Starburst for Extreme Heroism with Diamonds for halting the discharge of the Spine mount Meson Gun answering the Vargr vanguard. She had taken the shot before her ship’s computer could feed her the firing solution from the Sensors. In a later interview, Dhaie sagely admitted that it was a lucky shot which still won her the medal if not the full injection of Charisma at the Battle of Orraerz. The surgical hit turned the tides against the Gashikan fleet.

By the time both Vargr and Human fleets were down to half strength, the Emissaries from high-tech and distant Dhillourr (Gzaekfueg 1413) arrived in Tech-16 Cruisers too late to prevent the engagement. Calling a halt to the Battle, the Emissaries ordered the Ruler of Five fleet to cease fire and regroup to mainworld Orraerz. Similarly, the Dhillourr force ordered the Humans to leave the system and return to Gashikan space or suffer the consequences of the Cruiser group weapons. The Battle of Orraerz dwindled to a few parting shots by hot heads on both sides who wanted the last word. Corsairs began scraping what they could before ship fragments could fall out of orbit over Fuegorruegh. However, Captain Kan was not one of the lucky Rogues to live to collect on the pardon and the loot from the battlefield. His Corsair was hit by a Meson Gun, a bridge hit and the entire crew was lost as the ship cracked in two with sharp wings and fins spinning into space.

With the Emissaries of Dhillourr on watch to separate the two forces, the ‘soenk Subsector fleet eventually fragmented as the squadrons retreated to Naval Bases further spinward of Orraerz. When the Gaskikans could get their flagship back online to jump from Orraerz, media network ships were arriving to survey the aftermath and interview the Emissaries. Investigations began to track back through the chain of events and the trail of rumors to link the causality of the Battle of Orraerz. Curiously, the late Gvarrksae Kan ploy to open the trade routes to more Corsair predation never saw fruit. The salvage looting from the Battle of Orraerz was enough to cause a comatose period of wealth among the Corsair bands who left the merchant lanes alone, giving the corporate lines time to arm and armor their convoys. Business returned to a low, guttural growl by the end of 1097.
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