Saturday, July 14, 2012
Shas'o Dal'yth My'lok
Just thought I would post something for you guys that I did about a year ago for you to mull over while waiting for the Battle Report. Hope you enjoy, keep in mind this was pre-blog (so probably not as good as it could be)
One of the last students of Puretide, My'lok was a member of the twelve last disciples of the great commander. They were at his side when he finally died and this band is determined to bring glory to the T'au in the name of their tutor. The death of their instructor signaled the end of their time being taught and so together this group of young T'au needed to decide what was to happen.
It was decided that they should split into four groups of three to accomplish as much as possible: one group would continue the teachings of Puretide as best they were able, compiling the greatest recorded lessons as possible and themselves teaching where none existed; another group would work to battle the Tyranid menace wherever it lurked, after the battles with Hive Fleet Gorgon splinter fleets kept popping up and new Tyranids were encroaching upon T'au space all the time, the empire needed all the help against these monsters they could muster; the third group would battle the Orks wherever they appeared; the final group (which My'lok is a part of) would deploy wherever they were needed most, fighting in the most dire of circumstances and acting as only pupils of Puretide could.
My'lok has seen the conclusion of two separate campaigns himself, the first against the now infamous Ork Waaagh! Boom Blade, a grueling war that engulfed the Fi'rios sector. Thousands of Tau and their allies lost their lives, but through the tactical brilliance and swift actions of My'lok upon his commanders' deaths the battles that were heading for catastrophic defeats became glorious victories with the capture of several Ork Warbosses that held vital information. With these captives the whereabouts of the Ork forces and leaders were discerned and My'lok was able to bring about the decisive end to the conflict from Waaagh! Boom Blade.
He was given the title of Shas'o at the end of this conflict, immediately before he was called to do battle with the insidious Eldar corsairs of the Admiral Balykon. This conflict centered around Tash'var as so many pirate forces' attacks do, but this was not a normal conflict. The Eldar of Balykon were unusually strong and appeared out of nowhere, constantly attacking T'au forces wherever they were unexpected. Huge swathes of land and many Tau were slaughtered in the futile efforts to stop the mysterious pirates, and this was what caused My'lok to be called to the front.
Upon his arrival the T'au army and fleet was severely demoralized because of their crushing defeats and the seemingly omnipotent enemy forces. My'lok called up reports on the enemy tactics, the times between engagements, and the targets of these attacks. Initially it seemed as if there was no reason for the attacks or their targets, no correlation between the times or occurrences beforehand. Eventually after many weeks of study My'lok discovered that Admiral Balykon was not only attacking planets which at the time had just upgraded many of their defense and surveillance drones but also that the Eldar forces always seemed to be retreating in the same directions after their battles. Upon closer examination the drones My'lok discovered were in fact relaying defense information as well as live video footage to the Eldar forces, informing the admiral of the weakest defenses. Investigating further My'lok found that the Eldar themselves had introduced the technology for these upgrades to the T'au in a seemingly harmless manner and this was how the drones were incorporated into the T'au infrastructure.
When Shas'o Dal'yth My'lok took his fleet to one of the spots he had triangulated the Eldar to commonly retreat to he made a shocking discovery. The Admiral was utilizing the webway to dash from one position of space to another. He also made the groundbreaking discovery of how to access the webway entrances and utilize them with the help of Earth Caste scientist Fio'cat Bork'an Bar'thuul. Soon the entire area of space near Tash'var was scanned for webway portals and these locations staked out.
The trap was sprung on Balykon when he went to attack a planet that was deemed the best area for ambush by the T'au, stripping it of the majority of its defenses an making it a most tempting target. These forces were deployed nearby, but the reports entered into the planet's defense systems stated that they had gone several systems away to some planets that had recently been attacked. When Balykon emerged and descended upon the planet a huge armada of ships encircled the Eldar fleet while they were on the planet and destroyed or captured the majority of the vessels, ending the threat of that particular Eldar force.
Of course even without a fleet the Admiral was a potent and very lethal force to be reckoned with and it took many months of tactical maneuvering and swift deployments to capture the Admiral and officially make him into a prisoner of war.
It must be noted that My'lok was not the only T'au who was a player in the fall of Admiral Balykon, several of his subordinates and soldiers were key as well. Many of these have been promoted and have left his forces with a portion of his army and fleet. Reduced to a tenth of the size it used to be his army has recently engaged in another crucial fight, but this one may change the entire Empire based on the fate of this conflict.
Over the course of the Third Phase expansion the fleets of the T'au have travelled in every direction. This particular sector was formerly Imperial space, then abandoned for unknown reasons. The T'au arrived and began colonizing, staking there claim when the Imperium of Man came back unexpectedly, attacking the T'au forces. Almost instantaneously several Space Marine chapters showed up after requests for help after the initial combat against the T'au went poorly. The Necrons, having learned about a Tyranid fleet had themselves been following it and, when they assessed the situation in the system after dealing with the tiny Tyranid splinter fleet, deemed that the resources upon the planets were valuable enough to fight for. Over time the conflict continued amongst these factions until a fleet of Eldar Corsairs began raiding supply lines between the various sides, only to stumble upon the destination of the vessels; quickly realizing a great profit was to be made as well as understanding that the risk of allowing the planets to fall to the lesser races was unacceptable the Eldar weighed in. An Ork Warboss and his Waaagh!, on its way towards T'au space for what was rumored to be a proper fight, started to pass through the sector when it noticed all the shiny toys and the fightin' that was to be had on the planets below. Of course the forces of Chaos, the original fight having started almost a year ago, had intercepted intelligence on the fight from various agents within the Imperial forces and so deployed several powerful warbands to make their claim on the goods that were to be had. Up to this point things have not been going well for the T'au and so the shrunken forces of the Shas'o Dal'yth My'lok have been deployed to assist in the ever escalating war.
Ignoring all space around the sector itself there are four chief planets being fought over for one reason or another:
Chen'gau is a jungle planet rich with minerals and materials used for fuel and melta. It id covered in high mountains and low valleys, every bit smothered by trees and local wildlife that is not only everywhere on the planet but very, very lethal. Dozens of reports have been filed in regards to massive packs of cats swarming towns and devouring the inhabitants, or ambushing hunting parties. Even army camps are not safe as these creatures appear able to burrow underneath walls and silently stalk their prey from among their midst or homes. Vehicles are almost nonexistent on this planet due to the dense wilderness, close quarters fighting being the chief method of combat.
Frans'yl was once home to an alien race that either deserted their planet or were exterminated, but in any case there are no intelligent inhabitants of its city-like planetscape. Massive structures and complex roads sprout up everywhere on the surface of seemingly industrialized planet. Tons of artifacts and technological wonders are spread here, being the core reason for conflict in the region. Small vehicles are just about the only things present here with the exception for one or two tanks or artillery clearing areas and bulldozing the buildings.
Laopo'on is a desert canyon world with deep gorges and steep cliffs throughout the entire planet. Many pathways and trails intermingle on this planet, some ending in dead ends of cliff walls or huge drops thousands of feet down. It is frustratingly easy to get lost on this planet even when it has been studied extensively. The very land appears to scheme against the inhabitants as inexplicable landslides or shifting earth causes the deaths of thousands of those who set foot or hoof on the surface. Somewhere within the gorges a great temple full of dangerous secrets and psychic powers is hidden, guarded ferociously by the only people native to the planet. The T'au were attempting to find a way in when the other races arrived, and now it is a race for all to find the temple secrets before the others do, but the conflict has seriously affected the abilities of any to accomplish this goal, especially since the temple's location mysteriously keeps changing… Powerful tanks and flyers are prevalent here, and the battle fronts are constantly shifting as new pathways are discovered, exploded into being, or old trails disappear.
Chill'on is an ice world, completely without terrain but for the flat landscape covered in snow and ice. Massive fortresses have been constructed by the T'au and every other race here, for the only defenses are those erected by the armies themselves. Deep beneath the surface of the planet, approaching its center, some great presence can be felt, mostly by the psychic Eldar, and least by the T'au, who are only there because they can't leave any more because of the perpetual blockade of enemy ships around the planet, dooming any attempted escape. All the other psykers are pushing to discover what is down there, and great drills are digging into the outer crust so that the truth can be known. Currently battles are fought to destroy enemy drill camps or fortresses for supplies. Infantry are almost nonexistent due to the cold, at least not without vehicles for warmth and swift deployment to reduce exposure to the frosty climate.