Operation Cleaver

It had now been 30 days since the Imperials had made planetfall on the planet of Belrusia, on the Securas Peninsula. The campaign for it, and the planet capital of Cykagrad had proved more difficult than planned. Set-back after set-back, had slowed what had been planned as a week long march with no casualties to a prolonged campaign. The crusade had the manpower, and the resources to ultimately crush any foe before it however, and it would be only a matter time until this planet would be overrun. The loss of the Gopnik bridge was just another set-back in the campaign, and would serve only to delay the inevitable. The quicker the Guard got troops across, and claimed ultimate victory, the better. Lord Solar Macharius would be arriving soon, and Lord General Van Graff wanted to march his army in parade before the Lord Solar in the Capital, and claim total victory.

Colonel Chernov’s Chimera trundles along

Lord General Van Graff had ordered the Regimental commanders to a small church behind the lines. Colonel Chernov and his command retinue made their way to the small church in their command Chimera. The men discussed the situation the whole way,

“If the Chevaks had just let us cross we would be on the north side already” Chief- Provost Annos, the flagbearer, said.

“Van Graff holding us back as always. Wants his Cadians to get all the glory while we just skirt the flanks.” The Colonel retorted.

“If I may, Gentlemen, it is likely the enemy presence is too strong for our great regiment alone, and that is why we have been ordered to stand down.” Commissar Tarre replied, playing devil’s advocate.

“With all due respect, Commissar, my Firstborn could face any enemy and come out victorious.”

The Vostroyans arrive

The Vostroyans arrived finally and parked their command Chimera, and the rear doors swung open.

“Of course, the Cadians are already here.” Provostost Vodosan said as the men disembarked from the chimera.

“Quiet, all of you, I don’t want any of you starting anything. Commissar, keep things civil out here whilst I head inside.” Colonel Chernov said.

The two Cadian guards stopped him, and he showed his rank insignia. The men stepped aside, and nodded to him. Chernov swung the wooden doors open and stepped inside.

Chernov enters the church

Inside, the leading officers of several regiments were present, as well as a few who Chernov had not seen. He saluted, and Van Graff gave a half salute,

“Take a spot at the table, Chernov. We were waiting for you to grace us with your presence. Now that you are here, we can begin.”

Chernov moved to the open space across Van Graff. In the corner behind Van Graff, a Psyker of some sort wailed incoherently and flailed. Commodore Burke disregarded him with a huff. Major colonel Viers stared at Colonel Chernov, raised an eyebrow, then twisted his head back to Van Graff with a frown.

The briefing begins

Van Graff spoke in a booming voice that commanded the room, he waved his hand over the map on the table,

“Right then Gentlemen, here is the bridge and the area around it that we will be making our crossing. The area down river, especially the Delta, is a muddy quagmire that we would never be able to cross efficiently, and upriver is a rushing rapid coming down from the mountains. Here is the only opportunity to cross.”

He paused, and panned the room visually, none of the officers seemed to object to the idea yet, so Van Graff continued,

“The enemy PDF and Belacanians have dug in in a few places so far, and will likely dig in more in the coming days, so speed is key. We have yet to set a date, but it will be soon. The basic plan is simple, distract him with a left, hit hard with a right, then even harder with a left. Surround and capture the enemy, and force the Planetary Governors to recognize the Emperor’s right to rule this planet.”

Battle lines are drawn

He grabbed his pen and marked an arrow on the map, the officers watched intently,

“First, the diversion, Scions and other stormtrooper units will strike the Poshlost farm from the air, the Harakoni will be indispensable in this operation. Enemy artillery guns are located here, and destroying them will be key to a later phases of this plan. Once the enemy loses this, they will surely divert troops here, so the next phase can go ahead easier.”

the first phase of operation Cleaver

“Next,” he scribbled some more on the map, “the Cadian 88th, Vostroyan 21st and 9th will assault the right beach. I say beach, as some of you may already have seen, because the river bank right now is a beach of over 50 yards. Intel says, in the winter months, the river swells to a much higher level, leaving a muddy sandy bog behind in the dry months. As I’ve said before, this is the only viable place to cross. Viers, I am to understand your regiment is short of Chimeras. The Vostroyans will be donating their spares to you.”

He looked up at colonel Chernov. Chernov knew he had very few spares, a dozen maybe. He had no option with the Lord General ordering him in the kindest words to do it, so he replied,

“As many as your men require, Major colonel.” Chernov nearly threw up. Viers looked disgusted, likely thinking he had no need for such things from the Firstborn. Again, what choice was their with the Lord General ordering them.

The second stage of the plan

“Good, now, once on the other side, if possible, the Cadians will hold the enemy back, while the Vostroyans move inland and flank the town to cut it off from reinforcements. On day 3, the Cadian 108th will assault across the river, and relieve the Scions in Poshlost farm. If possible, they should move along the river toward the bridge. Here, will be the crux of the operation. Commodore Burke, you have the floor.” Van Graff motioned over to Commodore Burke.

Stage 3

“With pleasure, once a perimeter can be established around this area,” he drew around the town, “a low orbit frigate will deploy a Crassus bridge, guided into position via Arvus lighters. Final assembly finished by your own engineers and mine, you will have your bridge across this river. General Van Graff.” Commodore Burke motioned to Lord General Van Graff,

“Once the bridge is in place, the final stage can commence.”

Stage 4

“Finally, the 345th and the 245th will cross the bridge, along with the Vostroyan armor and all other units that have yet to cross. Once on the other side, if the enemy has yet to surrender after 5 days of constant battle, the armor will level the small village. That should make them understand the reality of the situation they are in.” There was a chuckle from many of the officers. “If all goes to plan, we’ll be parading through Cykagrad in a few days, I’ll relay when we have a date set. Until then, ready your men, any questions?”

The officers looked around at each other, none of them seemed to have any questions, and shook their heads. Satisfied, Lord General Van Graff dismissed the officers and they filed out to their Chimeras, and off to their troops. Van Graff and Burke remained, and toasted to their victory over a glass of local alcohol. The Psyker in the corner suddenly spoke,

“You lie to your men, unknowingly.”

Van Graff walked off, to finalize and review plans. The weight of the campaign solely on his shoulders. This had to work, he could not let the Lord Solar arrive before victory was his, how else could he gain favor, and secure his retirement as a planetary Governor.

Published by machariancrusade

Just a 40k Guard collector and hobbyist

One thought on “Operation Cleaver

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