General Kam returns with devastating consequences for Jackal and Coryphee, and the Lord Commander reveals the truth about Project Boomerang.
Play by Play Edit
Onboard the Yojimbo, Jackal is recovering from his blindness and spending time practicing in the simulators. Things are going well and it seems that Jackal is going to be ready to rejoin the Marauders on the battlefield soon. Berg comes in to let the Lord Commander know that a message has been received from Waylan, one of the Lord Commander’s network of spies. The entire company, including Barnett, convenes in the ready room to hear what Waylan, currently known as Spencer, has found. Waylon reports that the Emperor of Zathras has been struck with a debilitating illness and has not been seen in public for some time. Waylon has spirited away the Crown Prince but in the meantime many dukes and nobles has stepped up demanding that a regency be put in place. At the same time numerous drop ships have been landing in the area, mercenaries by the look of them, and sending their crews out into the badlands to so some digging, for what Waylan is not sure. The dropships are also doing aerial scouting along the planet, looking for something in particular. It is evident that these mercenaries are looking for Project Boomerang, a secret project hidden by the Lord Commander somewhere on Zathras. The team begins to plan for their return to Zathras when another message comes in, this one from a member of The Lost Third.
A colonel for General Kam presents an ultimatum to the Marauders, a lance on lance duel. General Kam demands that they choose a time and place on New Abilene for the duel which he will adhere to. Should the team refuse to honor his challenge the General and his men will raid the planet and slaughter innocent civilians. Jackal is extremely disturbed by this message and by the possibility that the man who murdered his friends has been released from prison. The Lord Commander and Coryphee want to leave the planet and head for Zathras, ignoring General Kam’s challenge, while the rest of the lance want to remain and fight. After some discussion it is decided that General Kam must be dealt with once and for all before they are able to head to Zathras. The Marauders choose to meet their enemies in the Badlands of New Abilene and request that the Baroness Lazaroth, a former enemy who has also been released and repatriated, bear witness to the duel as she has proven herself to be an honorable warrior. Jackal also requests permission to call in his family for support in the upcoming battle, which the Lord Commander allows.
The Marauders take the field and meet with General Kam, and his robot hands, as well as his commander, Captain Rannik, who Jackal recognizes as the man who was in command the day his lance was killed. The duel commences and seems to be proceeding according to the rules until a random Blackjack painted in General Kam’s colors arrives on the battlefield. George, one of Jackal’s relatives, has arrived to “help”. Jackal encourages him to proceed while the team urges him to call him off, as this could be perceived as breaking the agreements of the duel, which Jackal finally is able to do much to his chagrin. The duel continues with Talon taking heavy damage and Jackal getting closer and closer to the breaking point, especially with Captain Rannik taunting him about his old lance. Things get even worse when it is revealed the Coryphee, who has been strangely distant and drinking in her mech during this fight, not only worked for General Kam in the past but that she was part of the group that killed Jackal’s friends. Jackal has a complete meltdown in his mech and struggles to regain his composure while Coryphee calls for him to take out his anger on her, to give her the punishment she deserves. Jackal demands to know why he should trust any of the Marauders after this betrayal and learns that Coryphee was the one who cut off Kam’s hands and sent him to prison the last time. Jackal manages to pull himself together and expose Captain Rannik to a deadly attack from Valravn, while Coryphee destroys the tank carrying General Kam. Their opponent defeated, the shattered lance returns to the Yojimbo to deal with the fallout. Coryphee and Jackal have words, with Coryphee confiding to Valravn that she served Kam because she actually used to believe his rhetoric, and Jackal demands that next time she have more faith in confiding in him. The wounds are still fresh and will take time to heal, but the lance remains which is good as the Lord Commander is ready to reveal the truth about Project Boomerang. Waylan has reported that the Benefactor is searching for a Star League Era bunker hidden somewhere on Zathras full of tech. The Benefactor is specifically looking for the Boomerang Base in order to turn the tide on Zathras, something the Lord Commander says will not happen. He knows exactly where the bunker is hidden and that inside the bunker is a fortress dropship, a dropship he intends to retrieve and use against The Benefactor. The door to the bunker is coded to the DNA of only two people, the Lord Commander’s deceased wife and his daughter, Coryphee.