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"...and she had a Heart of Iron"

Sarah Tintagyl

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My name is Khris van Donop and I was there when the world burned...

[url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kLNW7qzJ-h4&feature=PlayList&p=697498F90207E33A&playnext_from=PL&playnext=1&index=48"]The Heart of Iron[/url]


June 1st, 2071
French Empire,

Paris was always beautiful in June, just the right temperature, if you weren't wearing your military formals, which if you were, the navy blue of the Imperial Guard's uniform baked you slowly. I sat on the back of a military jeep that flew down the paved and cobblestone roads of the capital towards the Hotel de Ville at the center of the city. As a Colonel inside General Delacour's Imperial Guard I often didn't get to attend war council meetings such as this, but the General had mentioned specifically to the Empress herself that I should be part of the council. Apparently very big things were happening to the Empire, perhaps the conclusion of the Iberian Campaign to finally take over Spain, perhaps there had been another Burgundian Rebellion in the East, everything was open to speculation, even...

"I think its Lorraine." Major Yves Bastien, one of the officers who served with in my inner council and the driver of the jeep turned and yelled back. Over the wind of the passing city, his speed, and the fact that everyone, including myself in the jeep had watched Yves time after time nearly hit the passing cars; barely any of us had heard him. He sneered when there was no response. "I said I think its Lorraine!"

"We heard you the first time Major!" I shouted holding my forehead. "Please, for the love of God watch the road."

Yves turned and the jeep straightened out before barreling into a parked car. People didn't yell at military officers, but discipline went a long way. At least for me. "Well want do you think Khris? I mean why else would they be summoning you to the capital."

"Doesn't mean that it'll be an advance to Germany. We're allied to them after all."

"It'll be Spain." Said the man in the passenger seat, Captain Valentin Martineau, another one of my aides. "We've been waiting far too long to take the rest of Iberia. Plus, its not like the Spaniards will be alone, I'm sure that the Finnish and the Scottish will get involved if we continue the war on the Peninsula."

"The Finnish get involved in everything." Yves glared as we approached the black gates of the Hotel. "Used to be such a quiet nation too, their new President's been screwing everything up..." I closed my eyes and leaned back on the leather seat, well, rough leather seat. I had sat on leather before and the cheap design of the seat in the back wasn't anything close. Through the sun-soaked darkness of my closed eyes I could still hear Yves and Valentin arguing about something that neither of them knew anything about. Hell, I knew as much as them, which was why the entire country had been in an uproar of late. Rumors.

The French had not always been an Imperial Power in the modern world, in fact, it had only been the recent acquisitions of the Zelle Regime that had placed France onto the world stage. I had been a young girl in the Revolutionary Socialist Syndicate of the Netherlands when Therese Zelle had first become Prime Minister of Aquitaine and watched from the proverbial sidelines as her leadership clashed with the Hohenzollern Regime of Burgundy, it was when I drew my first affinity to the French people. While my French affinity may shock you, I am not full Dutch either, my mother was a Belgian and I grew up in Brussels. It was when the first signs of decline occurred within the Netherlands that my family decided to immigrate to France, particularly Nantes. It was either France or North Germany at the time and since my father had a bad history with many of the Traditionalist Nordlanders, France was the better option.

We arrived in a country torn apart by years and years of oppression and strife, which was partly the reasoning of my joining the Military Academy at Pau. I watched from the gilded windows of the Academy as the nation pushed its way through diplomatic warfare finally seeing the collapse of Burgundy and the birth of a new French Republic. I fought with new comrades as we took to the streets of Lyon, Dijon, and Marseilles to root out the Burgundian Loyalists when the Civil War had begun and some of my most glory filled days were as the Imperial Army stormed the beaches in Galacia and the occupation of Valencia. Over the years I had climbed the ranks of the regular military and finally had been offered a post in the French Imperial Guard as a Colonel. They day that General Delacour had pinned the Empress' Crest on my chest was the happiest day of my life. Now it was time to prove that I had earned that medal and it was a constant trial to do so. Especially when people regard you first as a woman and then as a foreigner.

The jeep pulled into the black iron gates of the Hotel de Ville as soldiers of another detachment of the Guard came over to receive us. They snapped to salute as I stood up out of the car and returned the gesture. "Colonel van Donop, its a pleasure to see you M'am. The General Staff is upstairs waiting for you, you're actually the last one to arrive." Which was the last thing I wanted to hear.

"I'm sure they're thrilled."

"The Empress actually only arrived a half hour ago, I think you'll be okay. If you would follow me, I'm afraid your aides will have to wait outside."

I turned back over at Yves and Valentin, they nodded and smiled. "Go get 'em Khris." Then walked with the young official into the Hotel.


[url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RPIg-fOo7Ow"]L'Hotel de Ville a Paris[/url]

The Hotel de Ville was no doubt one of the most beautiful buildings in Paris and as my boots clicked on the wooden floor as I was led up the stairs towards the Council Chambers. There were portraits and statues of more French leaders, generals, and statesmen than I could count, and I could feel my palms beginning to sweat as we came to the great oaken doors of the Chamber. "Colonel."

"Of course, thank you Monsieur." I said, my Flemish accent poking through just a bit.

He smiled and left me beside the doors, I turned the knob and it opened with a loud click as I walked into the room. The Council Chamber was an oval shaped room, the various bureaucrats of the Empire nearest to where the entrance was, then the military commanders, then the senior government officials from Versailles, then at the center of the table, elevated above everyone else sat Therese Zelle, the Empress of France. I swallowed, probably loud enough for everyone to hear me too and I'm sure I looked nervous as well.

"Colonel Khristine van Donop I presume?" Said the Empress rising from her chair. I nodded, my mouth dry as a bone. "General Delacour has told me great things about you, your service in the Burgundian Rebellion and the Iberian Campaigns do not go without reward. Welcome to the War Council, please, take a seat." I nodded again and clenched my fists nervously. I had put on my gloves before entering the room and they were already wet with sweat, but I needed to breathe, just keep breathing, just keep breathing. And finally I found myself sitting down next to General Delacour and leaned back, sighing in relief that I had made it this far.

"You have to tone down the dramatics Khris. You're going to make everyone else nervous." She chuckled. "Your hair is going to be whiter than it already is."

"I don't think it can get much whiter." I looked straight ahead, now not only was I nervous, the word, 'freak' came in to my head. No, I couldn't have born with brown or blonde hair, I had to have white hair. At thirty, white hair...

"Now that we have all arrived." The Empress spoke again. "Marshal St.Croix, if you would begin with today's presentation."

St.Croix stood up out of his chair, his black ponytail swaying behind his head. "Thank you Your Highness. Ladies and Gentlemen, as you are all no doubt aware, the recent Imperial acquisitions of Galacia and Aragon have led to a dramatic increase in the French economy, so much in fact that we had finally the resources needed to secure the development of nuclear weapons. However, while our gains have been positive, it is the opinion of this council that many have lost the idea that the sins of Burgundy have still not been resolved." The map on the middle of the table began to move and the territories of Alsace and Lorraine were visible, Yves was right, it was Alsace and Lorraine. But why? Iberia still hadn't been conquered. "There have been recent developments within the German States over the past few months, the possible movement of Communist Rebels or some strange faction within the South."

"Marshal." One of the Bureaucrats leaned back. "You aren't serious, are you actually planning to forcefully take Alsace and Lorraine from the German Empire?"

"I am very serious Monsieur Renault."

"Iberia hasn't even been conquered and we are looking to dismantle the most powerful force on the face of the Earth?" Renault chuckled. "Perhaps in the future when France's security is more clear, but in such a partitioned world as this?"

"Spain is conquered, the Spanish Republic have a waste of cities left besides Seville and further intervention within that sphere will only cause inevitable war with Finland and possible other nations in Europe as well. War over nothing of value, an old city in the south and desert in the north. However the French people have yearned for the territories on the map for as long as France has existed. It was Hohenzollern's last curse on this glorious nation was to separate us from the very territories that countless of Frenchmen gave their lives to defend. He died happy knowing that Metz, Nancy, and Strasbourg were safely in the hands of the North Germans."

The Marshal had a point, Alsace and Lorraine had always been a subject of hot debate within political circles within France. I had been in a few arguments myself and while I had started on the German side, after the Netherlands had been absorbed into North Germany, I found myself rallying with the French for their command of Alsace and Lorraine as much as the most fanatical Frenchman.

"And diplomacy has failed?" Renault continued.

"We have approached the Germans numerous times in backrooms about possible movement of the boundaries to include even just Lorraine. Every time we have been denied." Began the Empress. "Even when officials in the area have concluded that the elections held to annex those territories into North Germany were fraudulent. Hohenzollern was cunning I will give him that, but not much more."

"And the plan itself Marshal?" Said General Tavernier, Commander of the First Army. "There have been recent cutbacks to the Imperial Army, we can only field a little more than half a million men."

St.Croix smiled and already I was an admirer. What they were talking about was madness, but he made it seem like France's fight was secured. "Ladies and Gentlemen, the United German Army outnumbers us three to one, but theirs is a nation that is as large as it is divided. The idea of this Germanized Europe is dead and should be squashed with every free bone in our bodies Excellencies. We have seen enough Empires rise in recent times taking land that they deem theirs, Germany has enough land without hording our traditional homes of Alsace and Lorraine. Therefore, there will be a large push in echelon to take the cites of Nancy, Metz, Haguenau, and Strasbourg, that is the main goal of our campaign. Though before anyone gets carried away, the speed of this campaign is most important, as in slowly. I will be dispatching the Black Guard..." Who were the Empire's premier espionage detachment, I knew many of them as they were part of the Imperial Guard before becoming operatives. "...they will be in charge of discovering German tactical systems over the border. Given we have amicable relations with the German States at the moment as well as open borders, the actual spying should not be a problem. General Delacour, you have the names of our operatives?"

"Four individuals each will be sent to the cities of Kaiserslautern, Strasbourg, and Saarbrucken, their jobs being to locate and disable tactical establishments, as soon as the word is given, the vanguard of mechanized and infantry divisions of the First Army, General Tavernier will attack Lorraine and Alsace proper, two hundred thousand should be more than enough to control those territories. But of course we can adjust as the Campaign continues. The rest of the reserve armies should be placed throughout the Empire for the eventual retribution of their allies. Both the navy and airforce must be kept on high alert the minute the spies are dispatched and Monsieur Grenier." St.Croix turned to the Minister of Immigration."


"The minute that those individuals are dispatched, the German borders are to be closed, if asked, why there have been rumors of Burgundian Revolts throughout Eastern France that must be quelled. That should take enough time for our men to discover what they need to for this offensive to be launched. And Claire, make sure your men stay in constant contact with our men over the border, timing of the general offensive is crucial."

"You don't need to worry from my end Jean, I promise you that." I knew that General Delacour and Marshal St.Croix had been friends before they had received their positions and it definitely showed. But I think that's what made them stronger commanders, that they had affection, most commanders I had been trained under were little more than human rocks.

"Well then, I have nothing else to add." St.Croix smiled and turned back to the Empress. "If her Majesty would permit, this Council can be dismissed."

"Very well, you have your orders, Godspeed and Good luck to you all."

We stood in unison and placed our hands over our hearts. "Long live the Empress, Long live France." We said in solemn unison together, it was the only time that Bureaucrats and military men stood together in such respect, normally we were at each others throats, so this was a pleasant change. But I was still confused to why I had been asked to come to the meeting. I understood that I was becoming a higher ranked commander, but the General Staff Council still seemed out of my reach so it was the first thing that I asked General Delacour as the Chambers began to separate and we walked down the stairs of the Hotel de Ville together.

"I don't mean to be rude or speak out of place General, but the Empress talked about that everyone had their orders. I don't know if I was in place there."

Delacour chuckled and slid her hand down the banister of the staircase. "Once again worrying too much Khris, but its understandable." She took my hand and squeezed. "You're palms are still sweating."

"I just had an audience with the Empress, who I've only seen from afar."

She smiled and took my shoulders as we crossed the marble floor. "This coming war is going to be very dangerous and for as confident as Jean is, it isn't going to be an easy victory. We're going to be lucky if there is a victory at all, but Alsace and Lorraine are rightfully ours and sometimes you have to take the risk to do right for your country. But I want you to stay safe because you're going to be near the front."

"The front?" My eyes went wide. "You're sending me to the front?"

"After you leave Paris, I want you to report to the village of Bayel. There is a small fortress nearby that will be one of the staging points for the actual attack on Lorraine and you will be commanding a detachment of Imperial Guards in the initial attack behind the vanguard. I need a good logistics commander and you're one of the best I have. You up for the challenge, if you do well enough, there might be a star on that shoulder of yours soon."


"Yes, I think General van Donop does have a ring to it and don't worry about alerting your men back at Pau, they knew this before you had even made it to Paris." She chuckled and walked away down the hall leaving me bug-eyes and mouth open at the staircase. Now not only was I going to be front row to possibly the largest war that had swept Europe in over twenty-five years. I walked out of the Hotel de Ville, still with that amazed look on my face, it had to be drawn on, Yves and Valentin had big smiles on their faces.

"Well what happened to you?" Yves chuckled as I plopped down into the jeep. "You look like you just saw a ghost."

"I think I did."

"Khris, c'mon, is everything okay?" Valentin looked back, finally a bit worried.

"Yves, you were right, its Lorraine and we're going to the front..."

I knew what my face must have looked like because theirs contorted just as quickly. "The front?"

"Our orders are to report to the Fortress of Bayel." I looked down at my watch and nodded. "We should get there sometime tonight if we drive for the the rest of the day. Maybe get something to eat along the way. The regiment has already been ordered to begin their march over there. Everything I believe is moving slowly so that the German's don't see anything suspicious, its an echelon attack though, so I don't know how sneaky we're going to be."

"Yeah you ain't kidding." Yves said as he started up the jeep and we took off back through the city of Paris towards the highways leading to the east.


June 2nd, 2071
French Empire

It ended up taking the rest of the night to get to Bayel, but when we had finally arrived it was clear that Marshal St.Croix had been preparing the liberation of Alsace and Lorraine for quite sometime. Bayel was not a formidable fortress as Pau and other regional bases had been developed into, but for a staging camp it was more than adequate. Concrete towers of turrets which had been built first during the Empress' 'Project X' stared out into the woodland beyond Bayel and as I stepped out of the jeep near the gated entrance of the fortress, I stopped for a moment and took a deep breath, the night air was exactly what I needed and pulled out the center braid of my hair letting it down. Yes, I felt much better.

"Colonel van Donop?" Said a familiar voice as the doors of the fortress opened. A brown haired girl, muscular, tall, and filled with passion and power that ran rings around my own stepped out from the light coming from within.

"Captain Duval." I smiled and embraced her. "Helene, did you know about this before? This transfer?"

"I only learned yesterday morning, after you had left for Paris. One of the Guard Commanders told me to take the regiment to Bayel and await you there. Are we doing what I think we're doing."

"Alsace and Lorraine?"

Helene's face immediately brightened, she had been a native of Metz and her family had chaffed under the Burgundian-Germanization of the northern and eastern territories. She had always been the most passionate in those arguments I mentioned earlier and I knew how much she had wanted to see the territories finally liberated from German rule. "Then I think I understand why Captain Adamo and Naudin are here, the Black Guard only gets involved with things like war and they were barely used in Galacia."

"Well they'll get their chance here no doubt." I said as Yves and Valentin came behind me, Helene was one of my aides as well and so the three of them exchanged their welcomes and we walked inside. After a day long drive, I had asked to be immediately taken up to my room, I could barely keep my eyes open and I had dealt with enough of Yves and Valentin's idiocy for one day, it would take me two to recover. The room I was staying in was small, large for a soldier's barracks, but nothing like my home back in Pau, but such was life on the front lines. You had to learn how to adapt...such as when there are unexpected knocks heard on your door at...two thirty in the morning. "Yes?" I sighed. "You can come in, I'm decent." And of course it would be General Blondel, my superior. Who came in with an apologetic look in his eyes, he had to know it was late.

"I apologize for my disturbance Colonel van Donop, but I will be sending the Black Guards over the border tonight. The actual attack against the German positions in Alsace and Lorraine should be in a few days. I need reports of our logistical lines before then. Can you get on that tomorrow?" I nodded. "Soon the whole border will be teeming with soldiers, I don't know what to make of it anymore, how this war will turn out."

"The Lion of Razo getting cold feet, Joseph, I expected more out of you." I chuckled.

He shook his head with the same humor. "Galicia and Germany are two completely different foes." This much was true. "I have a right to be nervous for my men."

I sighed and looked out the window at the moonlight above and closed my eyes. "I think we all do. We have a right to be nervous for the country...for France...for Europe..."


June 3rd, 2071
United German Lands

I knew the risk that the young men and women of the Black Guards were taking and I can't imagine just how nerve racking everything must have been for them, at least once they had crossed the border between France into Germany. As Marshal St. Croix had said, it was a huge advantage to the French effort that the borders were still open and the Germans really had no idea of what was coming, so suspicion wasn't a problem at all. However for Captain Jacques Adamo and Captain Celestine Naudin, they had to be suspicious, because for the life of them, they didn't know the dangers that lurked around every corner. They had crossed the border without any trouble and had rented a room at one of the hotels in Strausbourg, which would be their center base of operations. Which made sense considering that our attack was going to be centered around the liberation of Strausbourg.

After Jacques and Celestine had set up their base and their informants had been dispatched to Kaiserslautern and Saarbrucken as well, it was time for the Black Guard's operation to begin. The plan was simple, or at least it seemed simple to me. Strasbourg and the outlining cities would pose as the Germans front line of assault, their radar installations, electric grids, power depots, Anti-Aircraft guns, everything that could possibly prevent our attacks from going smoothly were either to be dismantled by the Black Guards or the coordinates sent back through the border to the forward base at Bayel and then given to the General Staff at Paris. After that smart weapons along with guided missiles and artillery would be launched at those positions the same time as the frontal attack against Lorraine and Alsace was to happen. If everything worked like clockwork, then it would not only lead to few French casualties, but few German and civilian casualties as well. We were not moving into the territories as conquerors, we were moving into the territory as liberators. Damage was to be kept at a minimum.

And so early on the morning of June the third, the operatives were sent out through the cities picked for the espionage assault, those who had gone were to be in direct contact with Celestine and Jacques whether the mission was a success or a failure, there were counter operations for both scenarios.

So they waited...and waited...and the operatives moved about the cities and the countryside as silent and as invisible as they could be, to snap pictures and send the coordinates back to Strasbourg.

The clock had begun to chime...

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The eye of Berlin wasn't looking at the west. It had fixed its problems on the west long ago, or so it thought. It had instead been staring southwards at the civilian unrest in the former Southern Germany, which it hoped to fix soon. There were some assembled military units in mild readiness, but close to Berlin and the South border, waiting to see if the Southern troops would handle everything as the second Ratsherr had promised that they would. There was no real Intel, no real Guard against France, which was supposed to be an ally. Whether if the French would succeed or not was only up to Police forces and Security cameras, and even civilians in the area. From Paris, it looked as if they could all simply just march all the way to Berlin unimpeded. [i]For now.[/i]

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Friedrich Wilhelm von Hohenzollern, King of Prussia and the Netherlands, looked at the map of Europe.

Wallonie and Lothringen. Why did it go to Frankreich? He could never understand the sudden change of heart that the Volk in the region had. Perhaps.... manipulation on the part of Zelle? Very likely at how the so-called Burgundian Rebellion called forth her enthronement. Intolerable from his point of view. Unlike his father, Wilhelm was a Martencism. He lived and breathed for the Vaterland, not Frankreich. It was his greatest wish for Deutschland to be the greatest of all.

He was Friedrich Wilhelm von Hohenzollern. If there is ever the chance, he will reclaim Wallonie, Lothringen, and Burgund, reforming the Kingdom of Lothringen. That was his goal.

Edited by Karl Martin
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[quote name='Karl Martin' date='19 July 2010 - 11:44 PM' timestamp='1279597434' post='2379885']
OOC: Let us stop twisting history. The area was over 90% German, how can such a election be fraudulent

In other news, Nancy is currently French. You could have asked me about it.

OOC: This is CNRP, twisting history is what we do :D

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OOC: Really Sarah, really? Why must you always write a wall of text... :((

Sorry, didn't see your post.



'Sir, we have received an alert that French troops are on the move in the north near the French-German border.' said a man operating a satellite screen in El Pentágono Nacional de Defensa. 'Move all military to DEFCON 3.' Said the General. 'Keep an eye on this and watch for more movement.' The General stated. 'Yes sir.' The man replied.


Edited by Ezequiel
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OOC: To continue from [url="http://forums.cybernations.net/index.php?showtopic=62364&view=findpost&p=2379538"]here...[/url]
In addition, both Sarah and Martens approved of the use of a certain epic-generating robot.


On the 17th of March, a young man clad in powerful armour had held a speech on the Im Hof square in Vienna.
On the same day, the southern part of the government attempted to kill him during his speech because he was deemed a risk to the 'security of the nation'.

On the 18th, the armed forces had to intervene. What nobody, and absolutely nobody had been counting on - aside from the revolutionary leader - was the Amber Guard. Only, its uniforms and signs were no longer of the well-known amber colour.
The Amber Guard had been turned into the [color="#8B0000"]Red Guard[/color]. Thus was the mightiest force in the VDL on the revolutionary side, baffling not only the soldiers fighting them or the people watching the battles, but also every single man in the StaSi and government.

On the 20th, Ratsherr Obama declared Martial Law in and around Vienna. The capital of the former GDR was in a state of war. However, despite the danger, Alexander continued to give speeches almost every day. Bullet-holes riddled his armour which had withstood all attacks until now, either through sheer ingenuity or the prototype hybrid armour.

On the 21st, special operatives managed to briefly corner the revolution's leader in an arms store.
While they attempted to take him into custody, however, they were suprised by a parol of the [color="#8B0000"]Red Guard[/color] and annihilated by them.

On the 23rd, the Revolution had spread into other parts of Austria, despite all efforts to quell it. Parts of the armed forces began to defect to the revolutionaries, most of them being veterans who had been raised under the rule of Sarkara. Others were disillusioned with the current government, thoughts that were made only stronger by the reactionary path taken by Obama in this civil war.
Others simply were convinced by the speeches.

On the 27th, more than two-thirds of the entire armed forces were battling, as loyalists or 'Bolsheviks'.

On the 28th, a machine that hadn't been used in decades emerged. It was well-known in the entire nation, for it had contributed to the destruction of all national martencist elements during the first Civil War.
Back then, it had been known as "Sword of the Crown".
Today, it was the "Fist of the Proletariat".

On the 1st of June, revolutionaries engaged a destroyer with heavy artillery, sinking it. The rest of the navy was recalled to come back home. An aircraft carrier was captured in the night.

On the 3rd, communications broke down. But from all borders, the continuing battles could be watched. It continued, and one of the sides would inevitably start losing.

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Darkness, nothing but darkness. It was the office of Nikita. She was working on issues regarding domestic terrorists when an entire crowd of Generals and Admirals entered her office.
“Your highness, the German issue has escalated, sources indicate revolutionaries are on a rise and our forces have detected a military buildup in France.” The last didn’t strike Nikita as a surprise at all, she rose from her chair and walked to the windows that offered a view over the city. People were walking around, business transactions were made, crime was fought, the city had no idea of what was going on in this one building.

“I knew Zelle would try this eventually, call a meeting of the Imperial War Cabinet for tomorrow morning. Call back the Second Fleet and all deployments with the exception of those to the Romonov Foundation. Increase the security forces at both the German as French embassies”

With that her Imperial Command left the office in the Imperial Palace in Athens.

(The next day)

It was a sad and rainy day, the streets in front of the palace were no longer filled with people having a good time. The only things that could be seen were cars going to and from Athens, however one car escorted by 2 military vehicles would drive through the gates of the palace just stopping in front of it. A minute later the Empress walked out with her usual security escort. As the cars left again they would drive away from Athens, the Imperial War Cabinet wasn’t a normal section of the government and great care was taken to keep the location of it hidden. Only 500 people in the Federation knew its location and those were extremely loyal to the new Empress. Nikita looked through the window of her limousine, something inside her felt reluctant to hold this meeting. For obvious reasons of course, it involved 2 friends. Somewhere she felt hope that it perhaps was just an exercise or perhaps even a joke. She even hoped that it was just a mistake by the Federal Intelligence Agency. After 5 hours the car arrived at what looked like a normal farm in the north of the Federation, completely isolated from the village nearby the cars drove in and parked. The Empress was escorted inside where the farm suddenly became a lot different, inside was a single elevator. First she had to let the chip in her be scanned by a sensor, after it a panel opened where she had to leave a thumbprint and then finally an iris scan. It was standard procedure for an Athenian base of any kind to feature those securities but this one would go even further. Once inside the elevator her guards were no longer allowed in, she had no idea how deep the complex was but it sure took long enough to get at the required level. Once there the same security measures were repeated but now with an additional millimeter wave scanner, the image would then be compared to files on record. As she was cleared by that scanner to the officer in charge finally entered his own thumbprint as the last level of authentication and authorization. As the door opened she saw a large room, almost all in the IWC were there. She slowly walked inside, the room was filled with flags, banners, paintings and so much more of past and current times. She walked to the side of the room where one chair a bit elevated from the rest was waiting. She took her seat and looked up.

“You all know why we are here. Are there any updates on the situation?”Nikita asked around the room. It included all her Magistrates, Imperial Command and the governors of the different countries in the union. Her Magistrate of Defense, an aging Admiral gave her the most recent reports. “Okay we all know the importance of this, France is a Mediterranean ally, North Germany is our historical ally. I do not care about the South however.” She knew this would spark a heated debate, but at moments like these heated was just what they needed.

“We must defend the Germans at all costs if the French march on” A General obviously of German decent yelled.

“What has Germany done for us? They have downgraded our alliance without notice. France has helped us and has shown to be a better friend” Jean-Luc replied from the other side, the 2 opposites continued for hours, it was obvious there was no consensus in the Imperial War Cabinet. After hearing enough of it Nikita coughed making the entire room silent. “All forces will be mobilized, all strategic weapons armed, all Aircraft fueled and our navy will increase the range and frequency of its patrols. Foreign Affairs will inform both the Ambassadors of France as Germany that Athens is willing to assist with an agreement and is even willing to send peacekeepers. However we will remain in this base and we will prepare the Federation for a potential war.” She said as she left the room and walked to the section of the base that was reserved for her. It featured an office, bedroom, bathroom and a residential area in addition to a secured ISIS interface and telephone line. If the situation escalated at least the government of Athens would be secure.

Edited by Centurius
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My name is Said Al-Malak, Ive seen countless wars fought, but never one quite like this...

[b]June 1. 2071
Paris, The Empire of France

The room was buzzing with idle chatter, the meeting was supposed to have started already, but someone was late. I didnt know who at the time, the Empress, generals St. Croix and Delacour were already seated, as well as a number of other military and civilian officials. I was somewhat surprised myself to be sitting at that table that day, Jean had sent me to France at the start of the Iberian Campaign to advise the French Military and further the 'strategic relationship' that existed at the time. With MEMU though, that unwritten 'strategic relationship' became a well known, and well defined formal alliance. In all the months I had been in France, I can remember only a few times where I actually consulted with the French General Staff and I was on the verge of suggesting that Jean bring me back home when I received a call from one of General Delacour's aides. There would be a meeting in Paris, my presence was strongly requested, how could I refuse.

I had no idea at the time that this meeting was to outline the invasion of Germany. As far as I could tell this meeting was about the extension of the War in Iberia, Spain and Scotland were fairly weak or disorganized powers. I had also heard talk of the French trying to take Monaco, certainly its remoteness would have made it difficult to hold in a war.

I sat silent throughout the presentation, this was a French operation, and at this early stage of planning it was best to let the French outline their own goals. When Alsace-Lorraine was revealed as the goal of the operation, I was surprised to say the least. Not only was Germany so much more powerful than the French but the two were close allies, at least thats how it had appeared to just about everyone who was not named Therese Zelle and who was not Empress of France. Perhaps the unification with South Germany and the civil revolts that had followed had changed the Empress' mind on the matter. Still, I did not see at the time how the French planned on overcoming the German military. The German Army that we would face was descended from the same army Martens himself had used to dominate the continent decades ago and, though Germany was much less inclined to flex its muscle, remained one of the most technologically advanced and well trained fighting forces on the continent. If we were to get involved in this, and I was quite sure at the time that Jean would want to get involved for Therese's sake, I intended to figure out just how Delacour and St. Croix intended to get the better of the Germans. The way it was being presented at that meeting by the French Brass, one would almost have thought this would be a straightforward operation, that surprise would bring victory.

Oh how wrong that sentiment was, as the following weeks would painfully show.

The meeting finally adjourned, by the looks of it many of the officers were about ready to get out of the hot, crowded meeting room. I always had found it funny how the French insisted on using dark blue fabric for dress uniforms, even though it was wholly unsuited for anything other than winter wear. Getting up to leave, I noticed General Delacour was alone, putting together her papers. Now would be as good a time as any to pick the collective French brain on how they thought this would really play out.

"Excuse me, General Delacour," I said as I came up alongside her left elbow. "If you have a moment there are a few things I would like to go over with you." Claire Delacour turned from her papers as I spoke, she seemed to understandably be under a great deal of pressure, she looked tired. "Ah, General Al-Malak, yes, of course, is something wrong?" I paused,"Wrong? Not necessarily..." I remember Claire pounced on the hesitation in that sentence, Im sure what Jean intended to do was one of the many worries she had to deal with, "Ah very good, then what can I do for you?""... though I am concerned about the.... brevity.... of General St. Croix's presentation." I remember her deflating, the air emptying out of her like a bellows, a deep sigh. Either I had just put Sicily back on her list of concerns or St. Croix's tone had bothered her as well. It was probably a combination of both, I think many in that room were taken slightly aback by how easy St. Croix made the whole operation seem. "Yes, it is quite the gamble, I think we all think that, including Marshal St.Croix and the Empress herself, but it is something that the French people hold very dear to their hearts." I certainly understood that point, the Crisis a few years before had been a very painful period for all of us, the last thing I wanted was to lecture her about what she already knew. "I dont mean to lecture you on the capabilities of the Germans, but I am hoping for a better understanding of just how you plan on withstanding the Germans.""We will be fighting this war entirely defensively, aside from the first attacks on Alsace and Lorraine." It was a sensible strategy, if not the obvious one. "As if those lands hadnt been captured by the Germans in the first place," she continued. "Yes, I assumed as much Claire." I had assumed as much, but that wasnt a very developed strategy, saying you will defend is one think, the ground you pick is another. I nodded my head in assent, arms crossed. I think she picked up on the fact I wasnt completely reassured about this, body language is a wonderful thing. "Though there is the possibility of opening another front in Holland but that is still on the drawing table." Holland, it was good to know they realized how many times that had been used in the continents history as an invasion route, though it was usually the Germans taking advantage of it. "I would be concerned about a German counter offensive that direction, Allah knows how many times they have done that successfully."

"Hence why it hasnt been set in stone General," Claire said with a smile. I let out a small laugh or two, we really had just said the same thing. "I understand, in a way much of this is left up to what the Germans do.""Oh yes, very much so... and the world..." Claire trailed off, I felt sorry for her, so much of this was really out of her control, all she could do was prepare for the storm, but then Sicily would end up in a similar place as the French, simply trying to ride out the storm. "One has to admire your loyalty to Sicily and I would even dare to say France General," Claire again deflated with a quiet sigh. "To be blunt with you Said...I think everyone is worried about this, include Lady Therese, but it is something that we have..." She trailed off, thinking what to say next. "...think if you were to lose Sardinia and the world did nothing..." That brought up bad memories of a few years ago and it showed on my face. Claire had no idea, I had been through losing half the country to the fascists and our 'allies' the Italians. "Burgundy was a traitorous nation to the French people and we are atoning for the sins of the past." Claire made a very good point, France was haunted by the divisions imposed by past regimes, just as Sicily was still haunted by the ghosts of Borghese, the collapse of the Ligurian State was more than enough proof that they were not finished causing trouble. "I know that feeling all too well General, I lost alot of good people holding the rearguard while we evacuated Sicily back during those dark days only to have the IF try and take our lands." Claire was obviously sympathetic, "It is the way the world works I'm afraid, we young people die so that the world can work correctly again."

"Indeed Claire, indeed. I cannot say for certain what Sicily's role in this conflict will be, but you can rest assured that you will have our support in one way or another." Claire seemed visibly relieved that she had one less ally to be concerned about. "I'm sure the Empress would be pleased, but as I said, I admire you for being here Said, and if things do get bad, I want to make sure you are on the first plane to Corsica. I won't allow one of my friends to get hurt." I was touched and a little surprised by the display of friendship, but I guess Claire and I had developed something of a friendship working together on the Iberian Campaogns, as little as I contributed. "Please, I am here to assist you and the Empress, scrambling back home because things are difficult is not something I plan on doing." Claire reached out and held my shoulder, she was firm, resolute, yet there was a distinct feeling of friendship and commiseration in that gesture. "There isn't an ally in the world I would rather have by my side then." "Your fight is my fight Claire, and Im sure Jean feels the same way about this." I knew Jean was very committed to a strong relationship with the french, on par with the relationship he tried to maintain with the UMS and RA. Jean would want to hear about this as soon as possible. As busy as he was dealing with Liguria, this was highly important news. "Speaking of which... would it be possible for someone to set up a secure connection so I can talk to Jean about this?" "Of course, I will talk to one of the Communication Commanders tonight and you can be on the phone with the Steward in the morning." Tommorrow morning, hmm, I would have preferred to speak with Jean before then, but it would do. "Thank you." "My pleasure."

There was something else that I needed to ask, something I needed to know,"There is one other thing General, why now? I would be lieing if I didnt say this has taken me completely by surprise." Claire reacted as if she had been expecting that very question. "I think that was the plan from the beginning, the element of surprise. We have been in constant talk with the Germans for the reclamation of Alsace and Lorraine, only to be met by a brick wall. With the Communist Rebellion in the South, and the South always have been French supporters... The Empress hopes to use that against the Germans and secure the territory that way." That certainly made sense and I nodded my understanding as she outlined the scenario in Germany, "I see, given the unrest in the South, now is as good a time as any i suppose." "That is our hope." Hope, much of our success depended on hope and the faith that a higher power would guide us through. I didnt say this in a way a non-Arab would understand, but I was not wholly disturbed by my lack of control, though we often delude ourselves to teh contrary, very little in life is under our influence, "Insha'illah we will come through this in one piece Claire." "God willing Said." I chuckled, perhaps insha'illah is not a strictly muslim feeling. I bid my farewell to Claire, she had been very helpful in reassuring me in the competence of the French command, I was sure the Steward would have no problem supporting Therese, " If you excuse me Claire, I must speak with my staff. Thank you for your frankness, its reassuring to know you know this wont be easy." We both laughed a bit as I left, there would be little time for laughter from now on.

Edited by The Flying Scotsman
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Still the war had been undeclared and undiscovered. Still the French attempts to prepare the grounds for invasion were underway, and the German command had no idea, no clue as to what was going on in the west. But the South was a different situation.

The situation seemed to become a chaotic one when the Southern forces seemed to sometimes join the newly-created Red side, and the Ratsherr did not know exactly how many of the forces would still be willing to work for Germany, rather than for these Bolsheviks. It was a good thing that the Northern Army was essentially just as it had been in the past, but with much better technology. Ratsherr Martens reaches for his Southern counterpart once more, one last time.

"You have proven to be awfully incompetent. I keep hearing reports of various units, including the Amber Guard, now switching over to the side of those aggitators. I am declaring a state of Emergency, and General Tambarskjelve will be your replacement until this situation can be corrected. I am mobilizing the Northern Armies plus whatever else in the South may be still loyal to Berlin, and will put an end to this rebellion. You have had plenty of chances to destroy this new arising Figurehead. We will not stand for this."

Germany raised its readiness almost to that of war and gathered all its divisions at the old North-South border. It would be only a few more hours until they would be able to initiate their offensive against the Rebels, which if caught early should represent no problem whatsoever, save for the Guard. The satellites were still watching, and the next few hours would be used to try to retrieve more info from the southern turmoil - the General Staff needed to know exactly what it was that they were up against. But their plans would be foiled by the soon-to-come western aggression, much like WW1 had triggered the original rise of Bolshevism.

The removal of the Southern Ratsherr and replacement by Tambarskjelve until the Crisis was over was announced then to the Country, and to the world by extension. The plans to send the Reichswehr to deal with the rebellion were also announced. This is probably exactly what Paris needed.

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June 9th, 2071
French Empire,

I knew when Joseph, Major General Blondel to be formal, got worried because he would drink tea and by the time that the fifth day had gone by since the Black Guard had been sent in to German Territory, there was reason to be nervous. It was supposed to take three days, four at most to have a positive reading on the coordinates of the Germans tactical strongholds in the nearby region. With this information in our hands, the attack on primarily Metz and Strausbourg would be flawless and the Germans wouldn't even know what hit them. Not that they would really know anyways, but a little added help wouldn't hurt either. But now we were concerned that perhaps the Black Guards had fallen into German hands over the border and that our entire campaign would be discovered, not even noticing the fact that over one-hundred-fifty thousand men, nearly a thousand tanks, and multiple artillery pieces had assembled in various lines from Bayel to the north and west. Thus completely surrounding the territories of Alsace and Lorraine, it had been a long build up, over the process of several months of mobilization, but as Marshal St.Croix had said, things were supposed to be taken slowly. Very slowly. But everything would work much more smoothly with the help of the operatives.

"He hasn't sent a missive back in six hours." I sat across from the General in the dimly lit command room of the fortress, watching him as he downed his fifth or maybe sixth cup of tea. "You've been here every time the operator receives the call Khris, you know that I'm not overreacting. The entire campaign depends on this."

"Well I wouldn't say the entire campaign sir." I said trying to lighten the mood, though his glare told me that it wasn't going to work. "We have to give Captain Adamo time, the work that they are performing isn't exactly..." Suddenly the door swung open from behind me as a man with a black leather trench coat, a beaten up brown hat, and a cigarette just barely resting on his mouth walked into the room. He was handsome with messy brown hair underneath the hat and deep brown eyes and when I realized my eyelashes were fluttering, I pushed any feeling I was having far back into my head...

[url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WYJIJABlOZg"]Theme of Espionage[/url]

..."Adamo!" Joseph hollered as he slammed his hands on his desk and jumped out of his chair. "Where in the hell are my reports? I was expecting a full report of the areas around those cities. Where in God's name are they? Are you giving them in lump sum or what?"

Jacques took a drag on his cigarette blew a steady stream of smoke into the air then turned to me and winked, I just shook my head. "I didn't know you kept sweet tarts Blondel, who's the girl?"

"Colonel Khris van Donop of the Imperial Guard." I narrowed my eyes. "You must be Jacques Adamo."

"The one and only Lady Khris, its a pleasure to meet you and I apologize for the sweet tart comment, but you should take it as a compliment, not too often I get to meet a young lady with white hair as breathtaking as your-"

"For Christ's Sake Adamo! Do you have the reports or not!" I felt like the room was going to explode there was so much tension in the air and all the time couldn't help but feel a bit flattered. Get a hold of yourself Khris, for the Love of God.

"Well, about the reports." Adamo took another drag and sighed. "I underestimated just how good German security is around our borders. If the general German population had no clue that we were moving, I'd say that they were expecting something like this, every building that we even tried to inspect was filled with guards and I wasn't about to endanger the perceived friendship we have by trying to sneak in, actually, sneak in wasn't even possible, we never even made it to the areas around the radar installations or electric grids."

"Well this is North Germany we're talking about, or at least their old territory." I chimed in, I did know a thing or two about North German culture from my father. "They're prepared for war almost constantly, lightly defended border is a blessing, even if the operation wasn't a success."

Joseph on the other hand was less understanding as he slumped into his seat with his head in his hands. "We're walking into Alsace and Lorraine nearly blind. You said that there were light defenses Adamo?"

"From what I could see just from general conversation and observation, its an educated guess, especially given the fact that Germany has a lot more hostile borders than ours. I can imagine that we would be fighting the full force of the German Army." Said the spy and turned with a smile at me. "Anyways, I've told my men to return to Bayel and during the actual invasion of German we'll engage in sabotage movements against any forces or positions in the back, think of as the French Resistance to a German Alsace-Lorraine. But is that all you will need from me General Blondel, Colonel van Donop?"

Joseph nodded and shooed out the Black Guard Captain, I stared at him the entire way out and then turned back to the General and stood up out of my chair. "Don't betray your emotions for a rat like that Khris, spies are..." He paused. "A different breed of men and women than we soldiers, it would be good for you to remember that."

"Of course sir. I trust we will be going forward with the advance then?"

"In two days, we'll give the German's a taste of their own Blitzkrieg warfare. We will have the War Council tomorrow to decide just how the attack is to occur, you will be leading the attack on Metz with the general that I place on the Northern Front. From what I've heard from General Delacour, there could be 'stars' at risk here." I bit my bottom lip, things were getting more interesting by the minute, possible promotion to a General and now I would be leading the attack on Metz itself. needless to say I knew that Helene was going to be ecstatic, this would brighten Yves and Valentin's days as well, they had been itching for a fight again and they would get it. "But after you get that look off your face, you are dismissed Colonel."

I shook my head and blinked before coming to a firm salute. "Yes, of course, thank you sir. Have a good night sir." I bowed after the salute and turned on my heels out of the Commander's Quarters and down the narrow cement corridors of the fortress, it definitely did not have the same feeling that the Chateaus in Southern France did, there was that coming war and death feeling about it, the last bunker of safety feeling and I needed to get some fresh air. I was literally suffocating. Breaking out of the concrete bunker, I threw myself into the open night air of the edge of the Ardennes. The moon was bright and there was the sound of talking soldiers nearby, but no voices that I recognized, so I walked a ways from the fortress to a cooler glade of trees and sat back against a spruce's smooth bark and turned my head to the stars above. So this is what nervousness feels like, to know that in two days you would be amidst the gunfire, the smoke, the carnage of battle once again. I couldn't say I missed it, I loved the soldiering life, but even serving in the military for as long as I had, the feeling of uncertainty never seems to go away. There's always that chance that something is going to go wrong, but it wasn't my place to condemn or applaud. The people of France wanted Alsace and Lorraine back, Her Majesty wanted it, and it was my duty to deliver. Slowly I could feel my eyes beginning to close, there must have been a creek nearby, the water was so incredibly soothing to my ears and I was so tired that the world simply slipped out of focus. When I awoke it was pitch black out and the moon was hidden behind large clouds, checking my watch it was around three in the morning and I staggered back to the fortress and up to my personal quarters. But after that, I couldn't fall back asleep and I dealt with that suffocating feeling for the rest of the night.

[url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n1aPCORrLzM"]The War Council[/url]

The next day was the War Council and while I was still horridly tired from the night before, my hair being an absolute wreck and my eyes still bloodshot from a night of tossing and turning on my pillow, I sat at the middle of the Council table as the Commanders of the First Army began to debate their movements. These were the men who had literally taught me everything I knew about tactics, Rougemont, Blondel, Desnoyers, were the premier leaders of the Empire and it was these men would be leading the charges in to Lorraine, along with many of the armor commanders who had arrived from depots in Rheims and Paris, if the entire First Army had been assembled just for Lorraine, it would be a magnificent attack. At the head of the table sat General Fabrice Tavernier, Commander of the First Army who would be leading the entire operation.

Tavernier placed his head in his hands and closed his eyes before letting out a deep sigh. "Marshal St.Croix and the Empress have stated that they wish to see the front open in two days time. In addition, two corps of the Second army under the command of Raine and Ballanger will be approaching the city of Mulhouse and Belfort from the south, therefore under my full command will be a strength of 280,000 soldiers advancing on the positions in these territories, along with 2800 mechanized armor and infantry and a total of 1250 artillery pieces, organized into various batteries." He sighed in the middle of the sentence. "Since General Blondel's espionage attempt has failed to find the tactical and defensive objectives in German held territory, we must move cautiously through this, because we have no idea of German strength in the region, if they are dug in, or if they aren't anticipating anything at all. Which seems to be the favorable opinion held by you gentlemen."

"In light of this of course General." Blondel spoke up. "The use of air observation is key, once we have crossed the border of Germany with such a massive amount of men there is no way to say that this is anything but open war. However if we can secure Nancy, Metz, and Epinal within the first hours of the invasion, I think we will be doing quite good for ourselves, especially given that our offense will stop after Strausbourg and Haguenau are in our grasp. Remember, this is a liberation campaign gentlemen, not a war for conquering Germany. This will be enough of Germany to last a lifetime for all of us." He chuckled. "I suggest that in lead of every prong of our attack that there be various battalions of skirmishers and snipers, they are too move quickly, as quickly as possible as well we will launch UAVs over the territories to pick up any forces from the ground."

"And their Anti-Air?" Said Commander Pourcel, one of the Fighter Squadron commanders. "I don't intend to see my men shot down if this can be prevented."

"You won't need to worry, you will be in support of the ground troops and on constant stand-by the minute that the German Air Force is detected, then your job is to intercept and destroy all incoming enemy fighters. I don't believe Anti-Air will be a serious problem unless we are fighting over the cities themselves, in which I will try to push the ground commanders to secure those locations first." Said Blondel

"Very well."

"As to the actual ground campaign." Began Tavernier again. "The First Army will be split into various prongs to secure the cities of Nancy, Metz, and Epinal first. After those are secure, a countryside operation will begin to sweep over any German defenders between the secured cities and Strasbourg. At the same time the 80,000 men along with armor, artillery and air support that departed from Besancon will be securing Mulhouse. Once again they will be moving slowly, scouts and snipers as their vanguard and secure the south. If all goes according to plan, those men will hopefully at least aid in securing Southern Alsace, while the First Army moves on towards Strasbourg. Reserves will be marching into secure the captured cities."

"And the Field Commanders?" I lifted my head and spoke up.

"Ah yes, Colonel van Donop, considering that you are one of the commanders here leading soldiers into the cities personally. Secure the cities, in your case, Metz, with as little damage as possible to the civic infrastructure, these are our countrymen after all. All status reports are to be radioed to the forward base here and your advances will be monitored. All infantry commanders will assume total command of air squadrons and armor and artillery. I believe that our infantry commanders will have the best scope of what is going on and how to prevent damage to the cities that other commanders will not see. Your regiment will be one of the first ones into Metz will it not Colonel?"

"The first."

"Indeed, then I look forward to your report, you hold the Northern Flank, be prepared for heavy fighting."

"I always am sir."

"Well, you each will receive individual orders tomorrow for the march into Lorraine and Alsace, but I believe the plan that I have presented is acceptable to you all."

The Council was dismissed sometime after that and the various commanders journeyed to their individual regiments and platoons, which was where I was heading too as well. Helene, Yves, and Valentin met me in the training fields outside of Bayel where my own company had set up their camp, five hundred Imperial Guardsmen, ready for action at a minutes notice. The dried grass crunched under my boot as I neared them and all three of my aides heads lifted up and smiled as I walked over to them. I didn't need to say anything, their faces said it all. What was going on? Where are we going? When is the attack going to be? But I simply sat down, put my head in my hands and took a deep breath. "Metz. We are leading the army into Metz."

Their eyes widened. "Our regiment is the first one in?" Said Yves?" And I nodded. "Damn..."

"I have to meet with the junior officers tonight, reading scouts and sniper patrols as well as the armor battalions and artillery batteries I have under my control. Air power too."

"They're giving a lot to you aren't they Khris." Said Valentin as he leaned on his hands looking out across the fields. Helene still hadn't spoken, just a dazed look remained on her face. "When are we heading out?"

"Tomorrow, we're going to be part of General Rougemont's Corp marching north through Bar-le-Duc and then into German Territory towards Metz. We'll surround the city as best as we can and then assault, hopefully German defenses won't be as strong as I anticipate, that spy I told you all about thinks that this is going to be some cake walk. Frankly, I'm kind of scared." Then Helene got up off of her chair and started to walk away, she didn't say a word, but Yves and Valentin didn't seem to pay much mind either. "Is something the matter?"

"I think we're all just a little nervous...excited...anxious...about what is going on. Helene is from Metz after all, it would be like invading Amsterdam for you Khris, the first time that you can truly return home." I looked back over as she disappeared from sight over the hill and back towards the fortress, suddenly the true extent and reason of the war began to open up and my stomach jerked forward. I felt sick and for the first time since the beginning of the civil war, when I had only been a Lieutenant. They had been the scariest times of my life, because I saw war for what it truly was. Galacia and Valencia hadn't had that feeling, they weren't the same. Now I would see war not just through a soldier's eyes, where only my heart hurt, but through an officer's eyes, where every man and woman under me, I was responsible for and I would feel their pain, and they would look up to me.

"Excuse me, guys...I have to be alone." I jumped up and ran as fast as I could away from Yves and Valentin, into the trees beyond the fortress and grabbed onto a tree as I turned my head forward and vomited onto the ground. Sinking down to my knees, I continued to spit until the feeling of anxiousness was finally out of me, that sickness that had enveloped me. "That...that was too much to think about."

[url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BGr_hvNMWUw&feature=related"]Thinking about the Future.[/url]

"Khris?" Helene's voice rang in my ears. "Are you okay?"

I looked up to see her standing over me, I nodded and gripped the tree branch to pull myself back up. "I'm okay, just something I must have ate. Or how nervous I am right now." Staring at her I wanted to pour my soul out, everything that I thought was going to happen, but I refrained, I had to keep a solemn look. "Just thinking about tomorrow."

"Yeah, I'm thinking about it too, I'm afraid, I'm afraid I'm not going to remember it."

"Remember tomorrow?"

"Remember Metz. Remember what it looked like, what it felt like when I was little. My parents have been dead for six years Khris, I don't have anything left in the city, anything but a few memories. That might not eve be there anymore."

"I'm sorry Helene, but you never know, you might be surprised."

She looked down at the ground and a tear dropped from her eye, dancing through the air as it struck a leaf. "Have you ever felt that an entire country is doing a service just for you and the sacrifice when it comes, is going to be too much to bear?"

"All the time." I took her shoulders. "Listen to me Helene, there are people across the country who are thinking the same as you. Whether they are at this camp, at another base, or mothers and fathers sending their children to war. We are liberating our countrymen, we are liberating something that was stolen from us. You aren't the only one that things that what is in front of us is too great. I think so too." I also didn't know what to think anymore, I doubted myself and I doubted my country, it wasn't that we weren't doing the right thing. But would the cost be worth it in the end? "We'll be okay Helene, I promise."

She looked up and nodded. "Yeah, it'll be okay." Then we both looked up at the reddening sky, it was nearly time for dinner and then the arrangements of our forces afterward. "Meet me on the other side of the Moselle?"

"I would have it no other way." We embraced tightly as the sun shone red through the trees and then quietly journeyed back to the fortress. That night, I arranged everything to be taken care of for the initial movement of the battalion the next day. Hand picked pilots, artillery commanders, and some of the best snipers I could find. These were men I trusted with my life and there was no other trust I could afford, our entire survival depended on them. Needless to say, the nausea that I had earlier came back, but I never threw up, just skirted the lines of being sick before finally falling into an uneasy sleep.


7:00 AM
June 11th, 2071
German-French Checkpoint,

[url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zw7BozXUtmc"]The Sins of Our Fathers[/url]

It was a glorious sight to behold. At seven in the morning of June the Eleventh, I believed that every woman and man within the French Army would be immortalized forever. At once the roar of the engines of our armor divisions echoed through the air, the hum of aircraft joined into the chorus and louder than all was the uncertainty and the anxiousness of the brave French men and women that marched along side of me as the various divisions of our armies began to make for the border of Germany. As General Tavernier had explained, the attack was to occur in various prongs, the first through fifth corps would begin together centered at Bayel and from the fortress begin to split up along the roads leading towards the cities within Lorraine. Meanwhile as that was going on General Raine, who had command of two corps, 80,000 men, 800 tanks, along with ten squadrons of fighter support in the air, as well as reserve artillery, would begin his assault against Mulhouse in the south. For the military forces attacking Lorraine proper, it would be a total force of two hundred thousand men, 2000 tanks, 1000 artillery pieces, and twenty fighter squadrons. Much of the Army had been called towards the border with Germany for the inevitable counter attack, but it was the hope of High Command that after the war had been joined, our soldiers, playing defensively on their home soil would be prepared to fight back against the German counter attack. Along with the rebellion in the south, hopes were high for success. But I was still nervous.

The First prong of our forces, the one that I was part of, under the command of Generals Blondel and Rougemont headed north towards the village of Bar-le-Duc and from there would split off into two more prongs, each of 40,000 men, and 200 tanks, the air support of course still only a few miles south, ready to be prepared at a moments notice. In front of each of these prongs were the sniper regiments along with forward scouts, to scope out German positions, if any, and report back to myself, or any field commander. With the element of surprise on our side however, it was most important not to engage the enemy unless we were engaged ourselves. The hopes being that perhaps the German Army, so caught off guard by the attack would end up surrendering as we pass through into German territory. Other prongs began to move at the same time General Jouvin with 40,000 men, 400 tanks, and 50 artillery pieces began the march towards Epinal down the roads through Val-de-Meuse. Furthermore, the center of the French Advance, Generals Desnoyers and Chastel, moved with the same strength of the force I was part of towards Neufchateau and on to secure Nancy. It would take some time of course for the actual battles to be joined, but it it was truly awe inspiring to be apart of.

I sat in the back of the armored caravan, heading north, along with Helene, Yves, Valentin, and a few of the junior officers who I had selected for the engagement. My rifle was slung around my back, my pistol in its holster, and my combat knife secured. I hadn't felt this way since Galacia and it had been a completely different war. This was different, so much different. This was a Beginning, a Beginning of an End.

...At 7 AM, The Empire of France has launched an aggressive operation to liberate the territories of Alsace and Lorraine from German Rule...

...it almost sounded surreal.

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[size="5"]4th of June. [/size]

"Alexander, We've taken over an airfield intact. Finally we can truly oppose the oppressors with their own weapons."
"You forget that they still control much of the AA network."
"But we shut communications down. How should they know who is friend and who is foe?"
"Just as we don't know until we reprogram the planes. At the time, it is too dangerous for the pilots to use them."
"But we can send recon missions."
Alexander and some close friends were gathered around a table, somewhere in the outskirts of a city commonly known as 'München' in the country, but usually known as Munich outside of the nation. They were utilizing a tablet PC to draw the approximate lines of battle onto a map of the VDL.
"Much of Austria has been captured by now, the same with Slovenia."
"The Unionist fleets still are mostly loyal, but we've taken over a number of ships in Koper. It'll be at least a week until they arrive."
"We should have air superiority in the region by then."
"What if not?"
"We'll have to think of something. Perhaps an ambush."
"Perhaps. We'll have to think of something later. Now, we must move onto Munich. The Ratsherr is hiding there."

[quote name='Kaiser Martens' date='21 July 2010 - 05:13 AM' timestamp='1279682006' post='2381887']
Ratsherr Martens reaches for his Southern counterpart once more, one last time.

"You have proven to be awfully incompetent. I keep hearing reports of various units, including the Amber Guard, now switching over to the side of those aggitators. I am declaring a state of Emergency, and General Tambarskjelve will be your replacement until this situation can be corrected. I am mobilizing the Northern Armies plus whatever else in the South may be still loyal to Berlin, and will put an end to this rebellion. You have had plenty of chances to destroy this new arising Figurehead. We will not stand for this."[/quote]
They would never receive a response to this from the second Ratsherr.

[size="5"]5th of June. [/size]

Munich was under heavy siege. Thousands, perhaps even ten of thousands of Bolsheviks and Loyalists were fighting in the streets.
Meanwhile, the massive monitors in these streets, as well as almost every channel of the former GDR showed the following speech. There were many reasons it was held in that moment, and no other...Though it would be looped once an hour for the rest of the day.

Today is a glorious day! Today is the day Munich and its traitorous leader, [i]Ratsherr[/i] Obama have fallen. In the night, we have infiltrated their headquarters within the city and cut the head off the snake's body.
Obama is dead!
I, Alexander Tovil Yakiya-Toba hereby declare the independence of the Slovenian Soviet Socialist Republic and the Austrian Soviet Federal Socialist Republic from our oppressors, the radical fascist government of the United German Lands.
Together with the [color="#8B0000"]Red Guard[/color] and the Fist of the Proletariat, we will liberate our peoples from the oppressive dictatorship!"[/center]

[size="5"]7th of June. [/size]

"We're routing the fascists on every turn. Several divisions have simply surrendered and put down their equipment."
"We gained a lot of high-tech this way, though we can't reliably use the battle network. Unfortunate, but nothing that stops us."
"It can still be hacked, or a new version developed. And don't forget that the [color="#8B0000"]Red Guard[/color] can still use theirs without problems. We can go from there after this."
"What's our status now?"
"We've successfully defeated the last resistance in both the Slovenian and Austrian Republics. We are advancing into Switzerland and Bavaria with ease and have defeated a total of approximately 310,000 enemies until now."
"Both deaths and surrenders?"
"Casualties on our side?"
"Much lower, though all dead. Around 190,000 have died for our cause already."
"A shame."
"But a necessary sacrifice for the Revolution!"
"Indeed. And many more still fight for us!"
"How many exactly?"
"More than half of the remaining forces, which we estimate to be at around 1.3 million."
"And the world shall know the name Yakiya-Toba as glorious leader of this revolution!"
"They will most certainly. However, our gains will be slower from now on. We will soon be battling not only against the southern armies, but also the northern ones."
"Perhaps. Yet, we shall not be stopped. This is but the beginning of a world revolution."

[size="5"]11th of June, 07:08 local time. [/size]

"Generals! Comrade Yakiya-Toba!"
"What is it?"
An aide rushed into the war room in which the highest officers were currently gathered.
"What is with France?"
"They are attacking, they're invading the VDL!"
The aide sat down, exhausted. He had run a long way to get here. He closed his eyes, having decided not to interfere further in the discussion.
"This is both an immense suprise as well as a great chance. They may be filthy monarchists, but if they're against our fascistic enemies..."
"A non-aggression treaty is the least we should offer them."
"At the very least, this will split the Unionist forces, making it easier for us to advance."
"They may decide to concentrate on us though, if the french dig in after a while."
"There's also the risk that they turn against us."
"Not...very likely, but if they do, we'll unleash the might of the Proletariat upon them."
"We did take over several of the missile silos early in the war, after all."
"And there's one in each of our three scientific complexes. Ultor and its brothers."
"Let's first see what their plans are. In a few days, we may contact them. In the meantime, our forces will continue their glorious path towards victory."
Nods of agreement came from the others.

[quote name='Kaiser Martens' date='21 July 2010 - 05:13 AM' timestamp='1279682006' post='2381887']
Germany raised its readiness almost to that of war and gathered all its divisions at the old North-South border. It would be only a few more hours until they would be able to initiate their offensive against the Rebels, which if caught early should represent no problem whatsoever, save for the Guard. The satellites were still watching, and the next few hours would be used to try to retrieve more info from the southern turmoil - the General Staff needed to know exactly what it was that they were up against. But their plans would be foiled by the soon-to-come western aggression, much like WW1 had triggered the original rise of Bolshevism.

The removal of the Southern Ratsherr and replacement by Tambarskjelve until the Crisis was over was announced then to the Country, and to the world by extension. The plans to send the Reichswehr to deal with the rebellion were also announced. This is probably exactly what Paris needed.

Edited by Lynneth
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I remember the day well… honestly, I doubt even the heaviest case of amnesia could wipe the memory of that day from my mind. It’s hard to forget the day the entire world as you knew it changed…

[b][u]Lieutenant Timothy Reed, Grand Army of the Republic[/b][/u]

It had been a quiet day up until that point. We were on a higher alert simply because of the tensions going on on our own continent. Southern Tahoe had joined with the United States, and North Tahoe was doing the customary saber-rattling. I had never been a fan of the United States, always proud that New York, and then the Republic of York, had never fallen into that hubris death trap. As something smaller, we were able to keep our wits about us more, and I honestly think that’s the only reason we paid attention that day.

We’d had some strange stuff coming out from the Germans over the past few days. Mostly whispers and stuff like that, you understand, nothing substantiated. Wisps of revolution, of civil war. My superiors told me not to worry about it, to simply place anything into the German’s file and stow it. I never thought those rumors were true… I mean, this is one of the strongest nations in the world… there’s no possible way they are undergoing a revolution. I should have listened more, gone digging… maybe then we would have been prepared.

The 5th of June… man, you can’t even begin to understand the shift that date has taken on. It was a nothing date, a throwaway. Not anymore. I was there when the broadcast came out… that Obama was dead. Decapitated. That was how you knew they were serious. I mean, who uses decapitation anymore? It’s like they went Marie Antoinette on his $@!. I made a joke to that effect, some of the other guys laughed… if only we had known how spot on I was with that joke.

This was almost like the French Revolution, but in Germany. The leader’s head was cut off, the people were rising, and elements of the military were switching sides either because they believed in the cause or simply because they wanted to save their own skins. It was the Communists, of course. The President hated them… a bunch of new guys came in on the 5th. Black uniforms, hadn’t seen them before. They instructed me to continue doing what I had been doing, monitoring any and all communications coming out of Germany. The group of them went over to a large bank of computers in the corner, sat down, turned them on, and began listening. They never said a word, simply wrote some things down every once in a while. Freaky man.

As bad as the 5th had been… the 11th was worse. I remember that day too. I was still monitoring Germany, most of the same stuff… separatists claiming to have captured more towns, more land, more military installations… the government still trying to maintain that they had order. My buddy Vic suddenly tapped me on the shoulder. He was the guy who monitored stuff coming out of France. His face was ashen white, his eyes wide and wild. He told me to start focusing on communications coming from the Germany-France border. That was way west of where I had been focusing most of my efforts. When I tried to tell him that wasn’t where the revolution was taking place, he told me to just do it. So I did. I think my face turned as white as his, and like a shot we were up to our commanding officer. A quick phone call from him to satellite command showed us what we had heard but hoped was not true. On the large screen before us we watched from above as France, our treaty partner, invaded one of the most powerful countries in the world.


It is with shock and alarm that I announce to the world that today, June 11th, the situation in Germany has started to spiral even more out of control. Communications and satellite monitoring in the area has shown a large French contingent crossing over the German border in an apparent invasion. This, coupled with the revolution that started only a week ago on German soil, can only be seen as an attempt to destabilize one of the most stabilizing factors in Europe.

Therefore, the Republic of York formally condemns the French invasion of Germany. However, the French still remain our MDoAP partner, and we will not abandon them to the wolves of the world. Should Germany retaliate, we will remain uninvolved. Should any other country feel the need to attack France, however, they shall also have to deal with forces of the Republic. Let’s face it… Germany shouldn’t need help with France.

Sir Michael Harland
Republic of York

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When the Empress had told her she had a long day ahead she sure hadn’t lied. After 16 hours of no rest at all Renée had finally found time to take some rest.

[b]4:00 AM
June 9th
Imperial War Cabinet[/b]

Her day started early, the first meeting was scheduled for 4:30, quickly changing into her uniform she walked to the meeting room, on her way there she had quickly taken a cup of coffee from the aide so she would stay aware of what was happening. Taking her seat next to some generals they had to wait a few more minutes before Nikita walked in and took her seat.

“It is now confirmed the South Germans have moved against the North, as it looks like they wont be able to resist the revolutionary hordes. The French border has not seen many developments.”

The Magistrate of Defense by now was in charge of providing regular updates to the IWC, Renée was a bit impressed by the people surrounding her, among all the aging people she seemed so inexperienced.

“Renée what do you propose we should do?”

The question from Nikita was completely unexpected, there were generals who had worked out war plans for years, why would the Empress ask her? She looked at a paper after which she looked at the Empress.

“We need to take the Second Army to the Slavic-German border, in addition our Second Fleet should maintain a strong position in the Adriatic. Finally we should approach the Slavic Federation about a joint operation to strike hard. The communists are currently weak so a quick offensive should cripple their efforts and allow our North German friends to advance. Finally Foreign Affairs should announce it does not recognize the revolutionary force to have any claim on the Optional Defense Pact or any other treaty that might exist.”

A few generals frowned at her but most nodded.

“I agree, prepare the deployments I want our forces in the Slavic Federation as soon as possible and the announcement made. In addition I will use my executive powers to put Field Commander Picard in charge of the First Division, it will be prepared for overseas deployment”

With that note half an hour had passed and the first meeting was over. The Cabinet slowly returned to their departments to work out the rest of the plans, Renée would need to contact Kalamata where the First Division was stationed. Only a day before she was a mere Company Commander in it and now she had command.

Outside of the base the orders were issued for the deployment of the Second Army, 200,000 soldiers and 2,000 tanks with artillery and logistical support.

[b]7:30 AM
June 11th
Imperial War Cabinet[/b]

For days she had attended regular meetings and traveled between Kalamata and the base. Now an emergency meeting was called, she had barely listened at some briefings on the way, if only she had listened better she wouldn’t be in for a surprise.

“Half an hour ago France has crossed the German border, an act of war against the Germans, in conjunction with the revolution a well timed attack”

“What else did we expect? That they’d deploy their forces to play cards with the Germans?”

In the entire conversation Renée had her attention fixed on Nikita, she seemed so cool under everything.

“We will neither support nor oppose the French war against Germany. However we will announce that any country trying to attack France for it would be considered at war with the Federation in line with the articles of the Mediterranean Economic and Military Union. Renée could I speak to you in private?”

Renée quickly followed Nikita to her office wondering what orders she would receive once inside she would remain standing in front of the door.

“You know just as well as I do France will be in for a tough fight. We can not support them however we can help them against opportunists. I want you to go to France and prepare the First Division for deployment to France proper for its defense. I do not have to tell you a lot depends on your actions in France. Good luck Renée and come back in one piece. If you meet Therese give her this letter. It is too sensitive for the regular channels to handle”


As a leader to another leader I know how hard this must be on you, I also understand why you want your historic lands unified. We can not help you with what is coming completely however I ask you to listen to the woman delivering this letter. She is of French and Athenian blood and you know her father. She can provide advice for you and will be just as loyal to France as she has been to Athens. In addition she has the support of the strongest of our Army against those opportunists who might try to hit France in its back.

Secondly, should the operation backfire I have informed my Ambassador to facilitate the evacuation of whomever you see fit to the Athenian Federation. Good luck Therese.

Yours sincerely,
Nikita Akhatova[/quote]

The letter was sealed as it was done centuries ago with the Imperial Coat of Arms on the back.

[b]4:20 PM
June 11th
Athens AFB[/b]

A special jet had been arranged for her to go to Paris, the home of her grandfather and the place her father loved. She had always felt an affection to France, its art, its people and its culture. For all intents and purposes she was a daughter of France in another part of Europe. She took the time while in the air to sleep 2 hours before she would arrive in Paris.

[b]8:50 PM
June 11th

As soon as she arrived in Paris a car from the Embassy would take her to the French Empress, for the occasion she had put on her military dress again. Once inside she looked around, it was in one word impressive. She had the impression the Ambassador had made some arrangements already so it would flow easier. She walked up to a guard “Monsieur, I am here at the request of the Athenian government for an audit with her highness.”

The guard would take her to Empress Zelle where she shortly saluted. “Your highness I have been send on behalf of Empress Akhatova”

“Ah of course Mademoiselle, Minister Talles told me that the Athenians would be sending a representative to speak with me. I trust that this is about the recent invasion of Alsace and Lorraine? But what is your name?”

"Renée Picard your Highness" She took the letter from one of the pockets in her uniform. "I have been requested to offer you this letter"

“Thank you Renee, and if you can please send Empress Akhatova my deepest and sincerest regards. So you have come to support your ancestry, I do hope you realize that this may be the hardest fight of your life. Of all of our lives.”

“I am well aware your highness, however I do know where our friends are. I would defend France with my dying breath if I need to.”

Therese holds her heart.

“I know that most of the world is not going to understand this war, I know even at times I don't understand it fully, but those territories, France could have the greatest Empire on Earth, but if Alsace and Lorraine are not part of our nation, it would all be worthless. But I am thankful that Athens sees that France's cause is noble, I hope there are more like you Renee, I really do.”

“Oui, my government may not support the conquest but I do. France has been sold out under the treacherous Karl Martin. It is only justice for the land to return. However I fear I can not directly assist against German operations in what is considered their land. My duties are limited to France and Iberia.”

“Then I hope that you never even have to fight, there have been rumors within the General Staff that the war may expand, Germany's allies for instance. Though to be honest, I wouldn't understand it. France may be fighting for her very survival here. A great deal of our hope is placed on the recent revolution in Austria. There was no better time to begin this operation. But in truth, even if we didn't have political blessings, I still would have fought.”

“I didn't say anything about unofficial support Empress, it never hurts to observe and offer advice. Empress Akhatova has suggested as much. “

“Yes, well, would you then rather stay in Paris as an attache or would be deployed to Iberia as part of our military operations in the south. Notably defense from German Mediterranean Allies and the Republic of Spain.”

“Yes. For the Republic of Spain the First Division is on its way. If you would allow me to I would like to look at the north too, you people may have missed something. As I said observe and advice.”

“Thank you, your highness. If you will excuse me I shall return to the Athenian Embassy to prepare a trip to the northern front and issue the orders to my men to regroup in the south.”

“Field Commander your Highness, I think it can be compared to what most countries call a Brigadier General”

“And your age, forgive me for such personal questions, but it is not every day that I am confronted with France's own Marquis de Lafayette.”

Renée smiled. "25 Empress"

“A Brigadier at Twenty-Five, you're young for your command and a woman as well, I can tell you Renee, I can empathize any difficulty you must have gone through to achieve that rank. I imagine that my journey through politics was much the same way. Also, while the French military does not have much of a female representation... Hopefully while you are over at the front you will be introduced to my Imperial Guard Commander Claire Delacour and one of her officers, Khris van Donop, both very capable commanders, I think they'll enjoy seeing another female senior officer over in Hell.”

“Oui, Empress. I thank you for your welcome and hope I can serve the French Empire as well as it deserves.”

“I look forward to hearing about you Miss Picard, good luck, and thank you.”

On that note she saluted once more and left the palace, one of her closest friends had been assigned as her deputy so she passed on the orders to him. The forces would soon be in the Iberian holdings. As she entered the car that was supposed to go to the Embassy she approached the driver.

“I do not need sleep now, please take me to the north”

The driver a bit amazed complied and soon the car would be on its way.

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June 2. 2071 7am
The League Building, Syracuse, Sicilian Archonate, The Sicilian League

The Steward had slept on a cot in his new office on the top floor of what was called 'The HQ' in Syracuse. The sudden collapse of the pro-Sicilian government in Liguria had prompted all-day and all-night meetings for the last two days. Finally the situation seemed to be under control, Sicilian troops had captured Genoa and the major population centers, thankfully few lives had been lost and the leaders of the fascist elements had been captured. He hoped he could finally put the fascist specter behind him, he hoped the country could finally move on, leave the Borghese regime in the past.

Reports of the death of Ratsherr Obama the day before had shaken the Steward, he remembered their meeting in Vienna shortly before German Unification, it seemed so long ago now, even though it wasnt.

He was feigning sleep when his young aide, Orlando Amalia, walked in to the room. Orlando had just graduated from one of Sicily's more prestigious Universities and he was a relative of a friend of the Steward's who had reccommended him. He had only been on the job a short while, but he was very bright and the Steward enjoyed having him on his staff.

"Excuse me, sir? I have a General Al-Malak on your private line, he says its urgent. Something about Priority Six"

The Steward bolted upright, he had told Said to only use Priority Six if something disturbing were happening in France. Given the way things were going, the communists were revolting in France now too.

"Give me the phone, wait outside."

He placed the phone to his ear and sat in silence on the edge of the cot as Said related his conversation with Delacour and the French General Staff meeting. He stared out the giant glass window, his perch 20 floors up giving a commanding view of Syracuse, all he could see today was the rain beating against the glass, the sky already black with storm clouds.

France invading Germany was a shock, but not totally unexpected. That didnt change the fact the Steward was infuriated that the French were taking such an absurd gamble. The Steward being infuriated also didnt change the fact he would help the French in any way he could.

"Thank you Said, I need you to help the French as much as you can. Ill see what the country can do to help you."

He held the phone in his lap. The Steward just sat and stared for a moment, processing everything he had just heard.

"Orlando, summon the council, we meet in ten minutes"
June 5. 2071 11am
Camp Novara- Headquarters of Northern District Command, Territorial Defense Force

The Camp was a hive of activity, as headquarters of the Northern District of the TDF, it was responsible for defending Milan and the borders with Germany, Switzerland and France. With the collapse of Liguria, the 20,000 men of the Northern Command had been thrown into action hunting down rebel leaders in Liguria and quelling riots on the streets of Genoa. Things had changed last night when General Orsini received new orders direct from General Headquarters, he was to take over occupation of Liguria from the RRC units that had landed, apparantly they were being shifted North to deal with 'contingencies'. Something was brewing, but he didnt know what.
June 7. 2071 Midday
Linate AFB, Milan

Major General Christos Giannoulas stepped off the small transport plane and on to the tarmac, members of his staff filing out behind him. Until a few days ago he had been a member of Admiral Acbari's 'inner-circle' of veteran commanders in the General Headquarters, but that was before word had come in that the French were planning to start a war with the Germans. Today he found himself standing on an airbase near Milan, watching as his new command unloaded from a fleet of C-130 Heavy Lift transports. With the French about to invade Germany, the Steward was preparing to open up a second front against the Germans by pushing across the Alps with the hope of drawing more German forces to the South and away from Alsace.

To do this he had been given command of two Corps from Army North as well as the entirety of the Rapid Reaction Corps, a total of 80,000 men, fully mechanized. His infantry was supported by the various artillery, anti-air and logistics auxiliaries that were attached to each regiment. General Giannoulas' Army of the North (Armata del Nord) also contained elements from the 2nd and 3rd Armored Groups, totaling 300 tanks.

A convoy or Humvees rolled up prepared to take General Guannoulas and his staff to where his forces were gathering in preparation for striking into Germany, near Locarno.
June 9. 2071
Verbania, Lago Maggiore

General Giannoulas was sitting at a small cafe overlooking Lago Maggiore, sipping cafe and reading reports on the disposition of his troops. While his troops would not move in until the 12th after the French launched their assault on Alsace-Lorraine, he wanted to be sure his men were in position to achieve their objectives quickly. With German troops in the South busy fighting communists in Bavaria and Austria, he did not expect to encounter much resistance in this far flung corner of Germany. If only light resistance was encountered he expected to be able to reach Andermatt and Chur by the 13th. This would largely negate the ability of the Germans to use the Alps as a natural defensive line, and would open up Luzern and Zurich for further operations.

Giannoulas was actually fairly optimistic about his troops' chances of achieving their initial goals. One of his aides approached with a piece of paper. "New orders from GHQ, Sir." He took the paper and scanned it quickly, a scowl crept its way onto his face. "Damn bureaucrats, tell the commanders the operation is 'indefinitely on hold.'

It turned out the communists were coming into the area, and the government didnt want to weaken the commies as a tool to weaken the German state. They wanted him to sit, wait, and await further order. Damn bureaucrats.
June 11. 2071 2pm
Ajaccio, Corsican Archonate, Sicilian League


This is Anastasio Spera reporting live from downtown Ajaccio where tens of thousands of people have taken to the streets. Soon after news broke of the Frances intention to forcibly liberate Alsace and Lorraine from United Germany people began to come out in the streets to call for the Steward to announce his support for France's latest expansionary campaign. Crowds started to gather first in Plaza de la Ligue, across from the League Administrative building, and soon swelled as the day went on. Crowds have now shut down streets across the city and the police presence has been surprisingly light. A police official I spoke to today estimated the crowds at upwards of 90,000, but he even admitted that this was a conservative estimate for the crowds filling Sicily's largest city. Thankfully the crowds have been mostly peaceful, though I have received reports of a handful of car fires across the city. As peaceful as these crowds have been their message is unmistakeable, they want freedom for the people of Alsace and Lorraine, and they want the government to do something about it.
June 11. 2071 7pm
Hotel de Ville, Paris, Empire of France


Edited by The Flying Scotsman
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[i]A sword is unsheathed.[/i]

The Elder Martens stands on a balcony at the Reichstag, remembering his older days, in which he had been the absolute ruler of Germany, only to have then thrown it all away. What happened from that moment onwards were only mechanical reactions to that decision, and now, he finally had the chance to revert it all. He puts his Pickelhaube on and adjusts the sword at his side, he wears his impecable Kaiser uniform and sighs, waiting for the Ratsherr to come out of his room nearby. He is wearing a similar, but less flashy uniform, and nods.

"So, it is [i]that[/i] time. I almost wish that it did not have to be like this."

The Elder Martens smiles and turns to face him. "But why? Battle [i]is[/i] supposed to be our patch."

-"But this is infighting. Although I suppose that if they're so unreasonable they do not leave us a choice."

Elder Martens nods, and they both walk away. It is a very sunny day, and later they arrive to a Bunker, a meeting of the General Staff, where Tambarskjelve is already waiting for them both. They all sit at a table, and many of the faces there were from the old German and Nordlandic guard. Martens liked to think that the one advantage Germany retained over the rest of the world were the training and experience of their officers. But would it be enough to secure a victory?

The table-map displayed Germany as well as France and the neighboring countries. The south of Germany, excepting for Martenshaven, was already completely red, and the "center" of Germany seemed to be mixed: Gray, representing the VDL, with different red marks which seemed to be an infection or an ugly bloodstain that should not be there. This was exactly what it represented for the men here. To them, there was little difference between the French Invaders and the Stalinists. It was betrayal, and that is the reason why it hurt so much. But in spite of the awful situation, everybody seemed to be quite cold, almost as cold as the air.

"Mein Kaiser." He nods Tambarskjelve to the Elder, and then "Ratsherr." towards the second.

"Here is the situation. Obama has been murdered in the south and the majority of the Southern Army has either defected to the Red Side or otherwise been ambushed and murdered by the Red Army. Those who can, are resisting their attacks, the rest are trying to retreat to the North. It is expected that when the Reds manage to occupy and control what used to be Southern Germany, they will attack the North to try and control the country as a whole. At the same time..." A section lights up in blue." We have Elsass-Lothringen under attack by French. They have moved there en-masse from different angles, and are not likely to find proper resistance other than our local group of Snipers and the resistance of the Locals proper, and their weapons. We only have minimal forces otherwise deployed in the area. They have also a much smaller, yet sizeable force protecting the rest of our border." The French units would display as blue. "We estimate that the French have mobilized almost one quarter of a million units for this operation. We have no estimate as to what type of forces to expect from the Bolsheviks, but our analysts suggest anything from 50% to 80% of the peak capabilities of Southern Germany. If we move in quick to the South right now, we should be able to defeat them without major problems. We should also be able to defeat the French. The problem is, we cannot defeat them both at once."

The place becomes silent. After a while, Tambarskjelve goes on.

"We have available roughly 550.000 troops. To put it bluntly, we do not have enough troops for both fronts even though our technology level is appropiate and even though each front individually should not be a major problem. Right now almost all of our deployed divisions sit at the area of the former North-South border...which is a blessing, else the Red rebellion would have spilled further North right away. So then. Our priority is to deal with the Southerners before they become strong. However, this may lead the French to too easily gaining what they would want, and then even occupying more territory and crushing us. The same happens if we dash for Paris. Although then we could potentially supply from Iceland."

The Ratsherr interrupts, "What is the situation in Nordheim and Eisland?"

-"Perfect. We have no deployed troops there, but we do have numerous amounts of reserves in all of our territories. What we do not have is enough Supply and Transport capacity to field all our troops at once. We would need to undeploy or kill the current troops in order to field more."

"Alright. I want you to move the Kriegsmarine from Königsberg to be rebased close to Hamburg, on our northwest, and keep it in the range of our AA gun coverage. We want no accidents on the sea while dealing with French forces. Send that order as soon as possible."

Another officer in the background did so, relaying the order elsewhere.

"Also, you need to cancel my assistance to the Tsarevich's baptism. I will be rather busy. I assume the nation is already on its maximum alertness level."

-"Correct, Ratsherr."

"Good. Now, use our satellites and send some discardable scout missiles to find out more about the Red and French positions and troops. Then I need you to fortify our Francogerman border almost but not quite with the same amount of troops that the French have placed there. At this time, we are in no position to defend Elsass-Lothringen. Try to place the rest of our troops to guard the frontier between us and the Reds, and then start to advance towards the south carefully so as to try and rescue Loyalist Units fleeing to the North. Keep a steady, constant front and keep advancing until you meet serious resistance. Then report back to me, and depending on the number of enemy combatants we find in Southern Germany, we may move on. Keep armored reserves behind all lines to cover for a Breakthrough, as well as our Luftwaffe."

-"Jawohl. It will be done."

"Good. What else...ah yes. Assign Riedelmann a post in the French Front. He knows how those frogs live, train, and fight. He should as well know how to defend from 'em. Herr Martens." He looks to the old Kaiser. "What do your Spies have to offer in these circumstances?"

He nods and begins to speak, staring forwards with his red eyes, "A number of things. First I will send operations to Southern Germany as well as France to gather intelligence. Such is the priority. Once that we have gathered intelligence, we will evaluate other types of operations. Do remember to disable our internet. I will let you know whether if this works out or not."

-"Alright. We will do that. Do it, Tambarskjelve." The Ratsherr adds, and the General nods.

"We need to try to help and fund our citizens and warriors behind enemy lines. For this, since using our airforce at this point is uneeded, we will test ten Cargo Missiles. Cargo Missiles are an idea of mine, which resemble an ICBM but have a shorter range, and contain a variety of items - Body armor and small arms mostly - to try to aid our people who cannot be otherwise supplied. I do not know how much this will help, but if it works, we'll make more."


"Have our AA fire upon the French aircraft which are in range, and when ground units come, have them fire at the ground units as well. Our SAMs should do a nice work out of even tanks...until they're overwhelmed that is. Herr Kaiser. You will be in charge of the French Theatre." - He complained, having wished for a more active assignment.

"And you Tambarskjelve will be assigned to the Red Theatre. Heimdallson of the Aesir will guard Nordheim and Himmelstoss will guard Iceland. Martenshaven continues to be assigned to Söderlund...for as long as he lasts. Tell him to fight until the last man, on Mannelig's Honor. Martens, you will have Riedelmann, Sokolovnikov and Langkjær to assist you. Tambarskjelve, you will have under your command Ten Hulsen, von Möller, Runesson and Krause. On the air, we have von Danzig, and Hildebrand to assist us. On the water we have Kluge and Haakonsen. That should do the trick. Now go forwards and tell us what you can gather from this all. I will make a speech for our people and for the world..."

They all stand up and salute, but some stay behind to continue to send and receive their orders. Already many planes are on the air, and the divisions are being mobilized to their designated positions before finally assembling and attacking.

"Oh, and one last thing. This may be a long, difficult war. We currently have the very best technology. But we cannot output good Tanks at the same velocity than the south. We need a new Tank design to be built, which can be cheaply produced enmasse. However, it must have an ETC gun, else it would not do well enough against the south. Think T-34."



[b]Army Group West "Wotans Schilt" (Martens)[/b]
Total Soldiers: 70k (70 Mechanized Infantry Divisions)
Total Tanks: 1200 (12 Panzer Divisions)
-210mm Heavy Artillery w/trucks (65% of the inf divisions use this)
-Armored Cars (Some)
-Light Tanks (Few)
-Heavy Tanks (Few)
-AA Panzer (Leopard 2 + SAM attachment - some)
-Engineers (Some)
-Tank Destroyers (Few)
-PzH 2000 Artillery (Assigned to most Panzer Divisions)
And additional armored HQ units.

[i]Battlegroup Donia[/i] (Langkjær)
West: 35k Inf.

[i]Battlegroup Bataven[/i] (Riedelmann - Reserves)
Behind the lines: Panzer Divisions, light tanks, armored cars, and PzHs.

[i]Battlegroup Nehalennia[/i] (Sokolovnikov)
East: 35k inf.

[b]Army Group South "Sleipnir" (Tambarskjelve)[/b]
Total Soldiers: 470k (470 Mechanized Infantry Divisions)
Total Tanks: 4000 (40 Panzer Divisions)
-210mm Heavy Artillery w/trucks (Some)
-Armored Cars (Some)
-Light Tanks (Rare)
-Heavy Tanks (Very rare)
-AA Panzer (Leopard 2 + SAM attachment - Common)
-Engineers (Common)
-Tank Destroyers (Some)
-PzH 2000 Artillery (Most divisions have this)
And additional armored HQ units.

[i]Battlegroup Sölversvärd[/i] (Ten Hulsen)
117k Inf. - 1000 tanks
[i]Battlegroup Mjöllnir[/i] (Runesson)
117k Inf - 1000 tanks
[i]Battlegroup Brünnhild[/i] (Krause)
117k Inf - 1000 tanks
[i]Battlegroup Teutonicus[/i] (von Möller)
117k Inf - 1000 tanks

The Air Groups are not so strictly divided, as they have more mobility. The Naval Forces are to work as one group for now, so have not been divided.


[u]At Martenshaven:[/u]

General Söderlund receives the news grimly. His city, Martenshaven, is surrounded but has not yet been attacked by the Red Army. He did not expect reinforcements, neither did he expect to surrender. The place was symbollic, and giving it up without a fight would be nonsensical. There are very few Army units in this city if anything at all, so he has to do his best with what he has got. Luckily for him, the city was indeed built to last, the majority of the buildings - at least those which had been there since the city had started - were tough like bunkers, and the city had walls as well as a central fortress. It was basically a sort of German Sevastopol. But the time when static defences had been useful had come and gone.

He closes the city and orders those which are not ready to die for Germany yet to depart to other countries through the sea - many ships leave Martenshaven, but many voluntarily stay to protect the city which has the name of the old and new Leader, and the grave of the greatest Hero of all, Mannelig. They knew they would die, but they also knew that they would try their best to give them hell. To improve their morale, later, one of those mentioned Cargo Missiles lands on the zone, with mixed results. They manage to deliver a number of Antipersonal and Antitank rockets, but the crashing of the rocket proper into a house nearly causes it all to simply explode. The rocket was ment to release the cargo on parachutes earlier. It did not work so well. But the men get their guns - guns of all kinds, which they owned, or which they got from weapon stores for free on the spot and even from military depots and police forces. From simple handguns and knives to heavy machineguns and sniper rifles, even a few flamethrowers. Several thousand men, as an improvised militia, get ready at different streets building for the reds to break through, then they will make their suicidal attack, scattered throughout the city. A special firework would be released by Söderlund when the attack was supposed to start. The General himself will then, with his personal Panzer, join in the fight. [i]"My Panzer will be a honorable grave."[/i]

[u]At Elsass-Lothringen:[/u]

The local AA at first attempted to fire upon the distant French fighters, but soon, noticing the large number of ground troops, the SAM sites are redirected to attempt to kill whatever Soft and Hard targets they could get tracked onto. These had no mobility, so they were soon likely to be wiped out after a few glorious shots. At the same time, people seemed to react furiously when seeing French troops, furiously against their supposed liberators. Accross different towns, the French meet with angry Germans with Shotguns, Rifles and Handguns shooting from the windows or sometimes even from the sewers. Some hurled at them Molotov cocktails. Most of these attacks were outright suicidal, and were simply an outraged reaction at the intruders. But a number of people knew better, and would use Sniper Rifles instead. These good Marksmen had been trained for such occations and would go on to occupy different places in different cities, and if possible, they would try to shoot officers - anyone who would be seen giving out an order, really. Some used their cameras and cellphones to record the violence, which they then send away as if to be able to prove to the world that they were not being liberated. Only a minority are happy that the French come, but these are not stupid and remain completely silent, else they may be killed as well. The German AA at this region opens fire on the French aircraft at first, but when noticing Armor and Infantry approaching them, they focus their next - and last - shots on the advancing troops until they're eventually taken out for good. A couple of the Cargo Missiles from Berlin give the people hopes of resisting, and eventually the French would encounter some properly armor-issued military men, capable of withstanding an amount of bullets before being killed. The whole environment seemed hostile to them. Even a few Technicals and a few Armored cars showed up, and the police forces attempted to organize some type of resistance. It was a chaotic situation, in which surely many Germans would be killed, resisting or not.

Army Group West takes its designated positions. Army Group South begins to move exactly as explained above.
Other Loyalist Units are told to break through to the north if possible, and if not to resist for as long as possible, as help is underway. Or is supposed to be.


A transmission is sent, first priority, through almost all of Germany, and for all the leaders of the world to see. It is a speech by Ratsherr Martens, who sits at an iron desk with a VDL flag behind him, in his military uniform. He removes his cap and places it nearby while the German Anthem slowly fades out to allow him to speak.

"[b]People of the world[/b],

Today, the German People and its government have been betrayed and backstabbed. Hours earlier, the nation of France, with whom we held a Mutual Defence and Aggression Pact, have attempted to use covert operations to disrupt our country's functionality and then moved a massive amount of troops into the territories of Elsass-Lothringen while massing more troops by the Northwestern borders which we share, threatening to further encrouch our territory at any moment. They have done this while our borders had been nearly unguarded against those we thought our equals, our friends, those whom we would have fought to defend, now shooting us on the back of our heads in a loki-inspired assault. Right now, the people of Elsass-Lothringen, alone, are trying to helplessly fend off the Invaders, and here we can see some footage. Do excuse the quality, as it was obtained by citizens with cellphones.

Then, pictures of French soldiers at the occupied territories are shown in which they attack German citizens and shoot at buildings, some of which are destroyed and set aflame. Sometimes, some German citizens are seen striking back with their own weapons, but when the French strike back, they must hit noncombatants as well, due to the Urban environment of battle.

They claim to be there to liberate the region. If so, why are the locals pelting them with lead and dying themselves in the process? We have indeed been very kind to the French before. In fact, when Netherlands had joined Northern Germany, we offered to France that they should keep Brüssels to show them that we respect the partially French population there, but they denied our offer - it cannot be argue that we did not try to share this country of Europe with them. They could not behave honorably, they would not be able to battle us upfront: They picked the cowardly path of treachery.

At the same time, we have been betrayed by many in the South. Southern Germany had been a state which repeatedly tried to invade, annex, destroy those in Northern Germany. But history seemed to change when North and South merged for good. The Southern Ratsherr, Obama, failed to run his half of the country properly and has now been killed by the Red Army. Indeed, there is now a Red Army in Southern Germany. Austria is completely occupied, as is Slovenia, while Martenshaven still resists. The rest of the territory between the former North and South is being disputed, and a large amount of Southern VDL army units have betrayed us, their Government, to fuel their own Stalinist dreams and destroy the union of North and South. So far, counting both sides, over one quarter of a million people - civilians and combatants - have been killed. Because of this, we are also in a state of war with the Red Army occupying Southern Germany right now. They too had to wait until such a chance to backstab us, betraying our trust. We did not wish to fight other Germans, we wished for German unity. In spite of our best attempts, in spite of sharing power, now, they are once more trying and murdering our people. I will say, enough is enough, and we, the VDL Government, have our mission to restore order of ALL of Germany, by extension returning Europe to the healthy power balance which it was peacefully enjoying until these subversive elements arose."

"This is a war which will do or undo Germany, a war which pits the forces of Extreme Left - even more extreme than regular Communism - against us, those who had wished for a balance among Left and Right. We now have a path which splits in two. Only one path will allow Germany to survive and will prevent red tyranny from arising. But we can only do this as an united Europe, as an united World. We henceforth request the assistance of our most honorable allies to put down this rebellion and to put down the French Expansionism."

"We make a call to the Honorable Rus Warriors in the Far East. We make a call to our Mediterranean neighbors in the South, our brothers. We make a call to the far North and its determined Finns. We make a call to the Middle East, who had once protected us from Southern Aggression and will surely bravely stop them again - this time for good. We make a call for our Northern Brothers and Neighbors, with whom we had solved our issues and protected, and as well further North to the land where Vikings dwell ready to sail again to defend Europe from this insanity. We also request for Slavonic Assistance to our Eastern, Fierce neighbors, that we know no lead can stop. Farther away, the mythical, mysterious Carthage may come to our assistance, as well as the Athenians and Spartans, and then the soldiers of the lands of Cochin. But, not only to them, not only to those we hold treaties with, we also call for all the Germans and Nordlanders of the world to come to assist us, including the might German Nation in America, and our Celtic Comrades, this call is for every nation in the world which understands our point of view, every nation which had once been betrayed and wishes to send the invaders and traitors to the freezing Helheim."

"That is how it must be. That is how it will be. We, together, will destroy all the invading Forces. We will never, ever give up. No matter how difficult the fight, no matter how much we may lose. As long as there's a German and a Nordmann that can wield a knife, it will be used, and the Red and the French will NEVER be able to rest, not even in their graves, not until the integrity of the German Fatherland and European Peace are mantained. For also France needs to be given a new, proper Government, one which will not turn its citizens into traitors, and so that the South may never spawn new Hitlers."

"Let the Furor Teutonicus arise! The Valkyries ride with us! FORWARDS!"

Then everywhere was war. The world was set aflame.

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Location: Meeting with Norway
The President's cell phone rings, the tiny screen blinking red. He apologizes to the Norwegian king, "I'm sorry, I have to take this call." and heads to somewhere private.
"Mr. President, Germany is being attacked by internal communist forces and France."
Taneli pauses, and the voice on the other end speaks again, "Sir?"
"...Tell Veitonen to rally the guard. Full alert, I want the reserves armed, I want the radars online, I want our airforce IN Germany in 24 hours where the German command wants them! Call the Athenians and ask them if they have any navy to spare, I want our troops in Antarctica back home as soon as possible! Veitonen should be able to handle the rest, but I have a treaty to sign, I will be back in Finland as soon as possible."
"Yes sir!"

Classified Message to North Germany:
From: Head of Republican Guard, General Samsa Veitonen
Sent via underwater secure telegram. Wireless waves were not trusted.
[font="Impact"]"Four Airborne Divisions ready for deployment where needed. Finnish airforce currently fueling or en-route to German airbases. Communists and French must be stopped. Intelligence on all movements requested. Don't want to walk into a meat grinder. Are Baltic fleets still loyal? Republican Guard can ship over to Danzig once ships are available. Merchant Marine still in Antarctica."[/font]

Classified Message to Athenian Republic:
From: Head of Republican Guard, General Samsa Veitonen
Sent via encrypted wireless due to lack of direct cables.
"Requesting naval escort of Finnish merchant marine from Antarctica. French fleet could be dangerous. 40,000 lives at stake. Would be much appreciated, will speak to President about future operations together if this escort happens."

Public Message to the World:
The Republic of Finland shall assist it's German ally, and fight the Communist and French invaders. An official statement from the President shall be given as soon as possible.

Edited by BaronUberstein
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GLP public announcement:

We have placed a trade/travel embargo on France due to their lack of use of diplomacy and attacking their own close ally when the ally is suffering from internal troubles.
To the non-communist Germany and its allies:

Although we can not provide direct assistance, we can cheaply sell raw material, military equipment and supplies proven that the waterway is clear.

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The news arrives at the Bunker. The first ally to answer had been the ones in Palma, which were apparently unable to help due to some sort of internal issues...then, the Finns came. They were the first to answer affirmatively. Soon, the Finnish Aircraft head southwards over the Baltic and over Nordheim's skies and coasts. Until recently it would have been unusual to see those aircraft around but other than to conflict with the inhabitants of Nordheim proper. But this time, they were going to help, and the old issues among the two nations would be gone for good.

Ratsherr Martens replies in the same telegraphic fashion:

[font="Lucida Console"]Intelligence efforts underway to determine power of Red Army.
French Army approximately equal to German Army.
Baltic fleet is loyal and being redeployed to the North Sea to prevent potential French Activity. May be able to escort your merchant fleet.
Baltic Sea is safe. Sending high capacity transport ships to Finland to allow for easy transfer of troops.
Send the Finnish Airforce to Danzig, Donnarsburg, Königsburg and Riga - far from the front but close enough to prevent attacks on Finnish Deployments.
Deploy the Finnish Ground units at Danzig. Then they will be moved to Central Germany and will only be sent to the front once that the current war situation allows for a clearer assessment. Later, Finnish Air Force can be deployed along the French-German-Red Borders. Thank you.[/font]

[quote]Although we can not provide direct assistance, we can cheaply sell raw material, military equipment and supplies proven that the waterway is clear. [/quote]

Waterways should be clear if material is first shipped to Iceland while avoiding French fleets. If French fleets redeploy to intercept such material, the German fleet will move to attack France in order to cause the French fleet to need to pull back. Once that the material arrives to Iceland, we can transfer it to the Mainland if needed ourselves. Thank you very much.

Edited by Kaiser Martens
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Private: "Well, I wish I could be a part of this," Chris said to Eli, "communists and the French, there is nothing more that I hate in this world."

Statement from the Prime Minister: "Although I would love to send military force to defend true Germany, unfortunately, with this tense situation, we must keep our soldiers at home."

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Divisions Returning from Antarctic:
20th Mechanized(T)
15th Mechanized(T)
14th Infantry(T)
18th Infantry

40,000 Infantry
Wheeled transportation for 20,000
Tracked transportation for 20,000
300 Mannerheim MBT's
1000 Vessla II IFV's
100 Steinhammer G 150mm Self Propelled Guns
100 95 S 58-61 Recoilless AT Guns
200 155mm GH52 APU towed howitzers

Divisions deploying to Danzig via Air:
4th Airborne
8th Airborne
12th Airborne
16th Airborne

40,000 Infantry
200 95 S 58-61 Recoilless AT Guns
200 M102 105mm howitzers

Divisions Mobilizing to Helsinki for Shipment:
Presidential Guard(T)
1st Infantry(T)
2nd Infantry
3rd Infantry(T)
5th Mechanized(T)
6th Infantry
7th Infantry
9th Infantry(T)
10th Mechanized(T)
11th Infantry
13th Infantry
17th Infantry
19th Infantry(T)

130,000 Infantry
Wheeled transportation for 110,000
Tracked transportation for 20,000
700 Mannerheim A1 MBT's
550 95 S 58-61 Recoilless AT Guns
1100 155mm GH52 APU towed howitzers
1000 Vessla II IFV's
100 Steinhammer G 150mm Self Propelled Guns

[[Mood Music: [url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y0Nj45dRoV4&feature=related"]Link[/url] ]]

Logistics Officers across Finland were pushing the railway's limits with getting this equipment to Helsinki, and the dock managers were having trouble dealing with all of the German ships and troops they had to manage. Families waved their sons goodbye, civilians cheered and saluted as the proud men of the Republican Guard rode trains, cars, and airplanes to Helsinki or Danzig. The men and women of the reserves reported in to the warehouses, all 182000 of them, taking up their rifles and portable radios should they need to defend the cities of Finland.

The first to arrive in Germany would be the Presidential Guard, marching proudly down the streets, 100 Mannerheim tanks rolling alongside them.

Edited by BaronUberstein
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The German Transport Ships should arrive soon enough from the Major Ports. A much smaller amount of transport ships has arrived from Reval (Former Talinn) to begin transferring already. Rather than loading the Finnish equipment and going back to Danzig and the other major ports, it will be simple to make a series of short travels from Helsinki to Reval and then to do the rest by foot. The troops will assemble later at Prussia before deployed to a line later.

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"Do you hear this, Germany? Do you hear the leadership crying for help in the world?
This is the nation that you once lived, and perhaps loved. A nation that I, too, once loved.
You may ask yourself: Why did this man abandon this nation? Why is he fighting against it?
The answer is actually rather simple. The leaders of this nation don't care for its people. They care for nothing but their power, their money and military might.
The elections, all of them since Sarkara lost power, have been one huge sham. You, the Peoples of Germany: You have been lied to. You have been stolen from and you have been oppressed, all without your knowledge.
Now that their power is breaking, the leaders of this country scream for help, trying to prevent the ship they have sabotaged all by themselves from sinking. They scream and flail for help, attempting to prevent the people of this nation to take the power they have been promised!
What is the creed of these so-called [i]Rational Communists[/i]? 'For the people, by the people'. Has that little sentence come true in any way? Think about it!
. . .
It hasn't.
And it is the same with the Martencists, whose militaristic and reactionary policies don't resemble anything close to the centrism they claim.
There is a word to describe them better: Fascists.

Now, the French? They are just opportunists. They use this Revolution of the People to further their own goals, they're only little better than the government we are attempting to remove. However, they and we have a small thing in common, which is the battle against the decadent leaders who wish to stop us.
Not much more, though.
But, I call to all who actually care about their people, those leaders of the world who truly wish for the best of their populations:
Do not intervene on behalf of the current 'German' government. It is a cancer, the only cure for which we, the People are!
Help them and you will only bring a cycle of revolution and counter-revolution to Germany and eventually, all of Europe as the People and the Bourgeoisie continue to battle until nothing is left!
Only we, the People can truly bring freedom and peace to this nation and subsequently to all of Europe!
Act carefully, and wisely."[/center]

The speech was over, and the camera cut to several locations in the Communist parts of Germans. Apparently, hundreds of thousands were in the streets of Munich, Innsbruck, Vienna, Koper and all these other cities, cheering for their new leader and this Revolution. A sea of red and yellow.



"I want at least one full Army in the south and east, Gentlemen."
"The Slavs could attack at anytime. They surely will want to take Slovenia at least, perhaps even Austria if they can get their filthy hands on it."
"How many can we arm?"
"Enough, I believe. The factories are already working again, churning out weaponry and the like. It's incredibly impressive, the people are working harder than ever before."
"Of course they are. The spirit of the Revolution strengthens them."
"I'm confident that we'll be able to arm at least 300,000 revolutionary guards. Commissars, too."
"Cowards will be shot?"
"Those who run are traitors to the people. They must be dealt with."
"Of course."
"On another note, are there any news from the front?"
"Moving well, we are still gaining land at the time. This might not last if we are attacked by the Slavs or come upon the actual fascist troops. They will not run as easily."
"Until then, we must annihilate as many Unionist forces as we can."
"What about Martenshaven?"
"We'll attack it soon enough. They'll know the red star just as well as we do once this is over."
"We can proclaim the Swiss and Bavarian republics, as well as that of Baden if we wish to."
"Let us do this. Let us show the world what the people want."


"We hereby proclaim the independence of the Swiss Soviet Federal Socialist Republic, the Bavarian Soviet Federal Socialist Republic and the Baden Soviet Socialist Republic!
They will support us in our struggle against the fascist oppressors!"


[b]Armed forces of the southern VDL[/b]
Report by the commanding General to Tambarskjelve.
Note: 1 Division = 10,000 soldiers or 100 tanks.

2 Infantry Divisions around Mulhouse.
55 Inf Divisions retreating north to friendly lines.
123 Inf Divisions lost to surrender, treachery, defection or complete annihilation.
46 Tank divisions retreating north.
134 Tank divisions lost to previously mentioned causes in addition to: Mechanic failures, lack of fuel, etc.

Operational Report:
Whatever forces are left are running out of everything. Food, ammunition, fuel and othe rsupplies.
Without aid from the north, the entire army will be annihilated soonder or later.

Rebel forces unknown in strength.
At least 70 infantry divisions moving north. Minimum of 30 tank divisions captured. Almost entire airforce captured. Navy defecting or captured.
Artillery, AA vehicles and the like mostly captured.
Space elevator defected.
VDSS Bismarck defected.
VDSV Explorer defected.
Supported by most of the southern population.
A catastrophe.

Edited by Lynneth
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[b]June 12th
6:00 AM
Imperial War Cabinet[/b]

Imperial Command had kept a close eye on the situation evolving in the north, when the cry for help from Berlin came in the Second Army was not in place yet however the Second Fleet was. Waiting for help from its Slavic brothers the fleet would remain in position for now not opening fire on occupied Germany. Back in the base a small crisis had come, the Finnish request had been received well and for its German allies they had to comply however on the other side were the French. As such Nikita prepared an answer for the Finnish.

[quote] General Samsa Veitonen,

I have received your request and will comply, the Fourth Fleet has been ordered to escort your ships on its voyage. Local Captains should be in contact with the merchant fleet soon. Please follow the planned course to maximize the security of Finnish ships.

Nikita Akhatova[/quote]

The message would be transmitted on the same frequency. To get North Germany informed a more secure communication would be used. The Ambassador had been called back and was handed over a letter in Athens which he would deliver back to Berlin the same day.


I have deployed my Second Army and my Second Fleet to locations in the Slavic Federation near German territory. These should be in place very soon, we plan to use these in cooperation with Slavic forces. Unfortunately I can not help you against France as they are our allies too. Should they come under attack from a party Athens does not maintain treaties too we will even be obligated to defend them. I hope you understand that we can only defend you against one aggressor, by far the most dangerous one however.

Yours sincerely,
Nikita Akhatova[/quote]

Now it was back to the meeting after she had finished the messages, she sighed as she heard the generals again.

“We can not deploy more forces, it would leave Athens undefended!”

“Who would attack us? No we need to deploy at least another army to the Slavic Federation to crush them.”

“Another army? We have only 3. Who knows what happens? The Communists have support here too, if we leave Athens undefended we may well have a revolt.

“Silence all of you. We will prepare the First Army for deployment however they will not be deployed yet. I want the press office prepared I will transmit a message throughout the country and the world tomorrow. Block all communications from either France or Germany from the ISIS interface. I do not need my own people to resist.”

With that Nikita left again, she was not mistaken. Throughout Athens demonstrations and protests had happened. The police having trouble separating the different groups.

[b]June 12th
1:00 PM

“This is Philander Asker reporting live from Athens. Authorities have reported that there are at least half a million people demonstrating in Athens today each supporting one of the sides in what has been named another world war. The protestors are getting more and more violent as you can see on the images. Wait what is this?”

The camera of the helicopter zooms in at a protest happening in front of the Assembly showing riot police opening fire on the protestors.

“The police has opened fire on protestors after hours of pressure, things are getting out of hand here. “

The report was abruptly ended with the face of the anchorman returning to the screen.

“We apologize however there have been some technical difficulties. The Ministry of Internal Affairs has just told us the bullets in question are rubber and no real fire has been used on the citizens. So far while we have tried for 2 weeks we have been unable to get any direct statements from the Empress, Council of Magistrates or even Imperial Command. Safety warnings have been issued, all citizens are advised to remain indoors as much as possible and only get out for work or purchasing basic supplies.”

The images shown resembled the situation in the Federation, the country was divided, the military was divided and it would involve efficiency. The people needed to hear from their leader.

[b]June 13th
10:00 AM
Imperial War Cabinet[/b]

As ordered the day before the press office was prepared, a room resembling the normal office of the Empress with the Athenian flag as background and a single camera. The camera would broadcast on all frequencies and as built in every television, ISIS interface or even the LCD windows would activate and show the message. It could not be missed, the same broadcast was transmitted internationally.

“My people,

I know there have been a lot of rumors and divisions in the Federation, some say we abandoned Germany others say we abandoned France. Neither are true. As some of you may know the Second Army and Second Fleet have been deployed. These are destined to assist an offensive in support of Berlin. In addition while we do not support France we do know they are our friends, therefore I have deployed the First Division commanded by one of the most skilled commanders in the Federation to France. While we can not defend her against our own allies we will strike those who get involved without a treaty to us. My people, it is times like these that the resolve of an Athenian is tested. We can make this work. We will make this work. We will defend our friends and we will emerge victorious. Now go to your jobs, meet your friends and family. Live your normal lives my people for the Hellenic Army is here to protect you and those who need us.”


[b]June 12th
11:50 AM

Renée had maintained contact with Athens through her blackberry, so far they hadn’t mind her involvement with the German operation yet. After being in the car for several hours they had arrived at the French-German border. She stepped out of the car unguarded and walked to one of the French officers.

“Monsieur I have been send here on behalf of my people in Athens and with permission from Empress Zelle to see if I can mean anything for your logistics and other strategies. Could you escort me to the Command post?”

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