No MechWarrior likes garrison duty. Your company sits on a rock at the ass end of Nowhere and looks mean so that nobody else takes it. It’s not glamorous work, but it pays the bills. It also gives you plenty of time to train, which is exactly what the Joker’s Wild counted on.
With a six month contract guarding copper and iron mines on the planet Lothario, temporary command of the Company was passed between the new recruits so that they could get a feel for the type of leadership it takes to coordinate a large group of mechs. Private Evelyn O’Connel found herself in the Commander’s Chair when Hobie’s Hussars, a rival mercenary force, attempted to take Lothario’s mineral wealth. Quickly mounting a defense, she managed to lead the Joker’s to victory.
The Battle for the Mines was the first actual taste of combat for some of the mercenaries and the first time they were actually working together. They managed to drive back a large raiding force, taking out their Company Commander and his NTK-2Q Night Hawk. After accepting the defeat of the opposing Merc Force, the Joker’s were called in to repel a second prong attack against the Ore Processing facility.
Private O’Connel split her forces and took a much smaller force of damaged mechs to face down the remaining Hussars. A lucky shot forced their quick capitulation and Hobie’s Hussars left Lothario none the richer while the Joker’s Wild not only captured several mechs but also successfully completed their contract.
Riding high on this success, the company boarded their Dropships and made the trip back to Galatea for a little downtime and their next contract. Even after five weeks in space, LT. Duschaine’s spirits were not dampened. Getting within range of Galatea, she tried to contact the Wild Card’s Command with no response. Concern quickly took hold as after three days of transit, she could not reach anybody in their compound.
Splitting her forces into a Mech and Ground component, LT. Duschaine approached the Compound in trepidation. There wasn’t anybody in sight, none of the other dropships were there, and all power appeared to be off. Landing, the group cautiously moved through the compound only to determine that the Wild Card’s had all been murdered in their sleep… almost to the man.
With further investigation, there were two survivors; Privates Corran Cracken and Christian Uriel managed to survive by pulling a punishment detail earlier that day. They witnessed men and women wearing different mercenary uniforms sneak into the compound, locking doors, and pumping in poison gas. Those that were up and about were shot in the head. Only by quick thinking on their part were they able to escape to the badlands as this mismatched assortment of mercenaries made off with all of their valuable materiel.
Upon the return of the last survivors of the Wild Cards, the privates reported to LT. Duschaine, who ordered the dead buried and began to reinforce the compound and dig through any remaining security tapes to determine motives behind the attack. The LT brought her findings to ComStar who unsurprisingly, did nothing, stating that there were numerous uniforms on the ground and none appeared to be part of a unified command. It appears that whoever attacked got the uniforms from surplus stores. There was one security picture that the ComStar Mercenary Guild Chairman did stare at for a good long while. That of a red haired figure in a tight black jumpsuit bearing this insignia.
The time in the Guild Hall wasn’t a total waste. The Wild Cards were able to pick up some new technicians to help rebuild the mechs damaged on Lothario as well as a contract to serve up some just desserts to The New Earth Trading Company factory on the planet Summer.