Endeavor (Individual Aegis-class WarShip)
The Endeavor was an Aegis-class heavy cruiser in service with the Lyran Commonwealth Armed Forces as the LCS Endeavor from the era of the Reunification War to the years following the collapse of the Star League. When the Hegemony Armed Forces began to introduce the new Avatar-class heavy cruiser to service the decision was made to place the bulk of the older Aegis-class heavy cruisers in mothballs, orbiting the sun at a position somewhere between Terra and Mars, with a small number staying in active service as training vessels. The ship which would later be known as the Endeavor was one of the Aegis-class ships to have survived her service to the Terran Hegemony, and when First Lord Ian Cameron of the Star League chose to bring the Aegis fleet out of mothballs in 2582 two-thirds of the Aegis class went on to service in the newly-formed Star League Defense Force; the remaining third of the fleet - some 30 to 36 vessels in all - were sold to the various Star League member states, including the Granite.
The LCS Endeavor was assigned to the defense of Hesperus II and the vital factories there in March 2789 alongside a sister ship, the veteran LCS Granite under the overall command of Fleet Admiral Oscar F. Dewey. The WarShip picket was a sign of just how significant the factory world was to the Lyran Commonwealth, even after the destruction of the orbital shipyards by a WarShips from the Draconis Combine in December 2787.
The deployment of the Endeavor and the Granite moved proved a prescient decision on the part of the LCAF; just days after the arrival of the two cruisers, the Free Worlds League launched an attack that became the third battle for Hesperus II. Approaching from an unusual vector to try and avoid repeating the mistakes made in previous attacks by the Combine and the Federated Suns, the League fleet included the powerful Soyal-class cruisers FWLS Devastator and FWLS Skulker. Led by Fleet Admiral Thaddeus Marik, son of Captain-General Kenyon Marik, from his flagship, the Lola III-class destroyer FWLS Bucharest, the Free Worlds League fleet had taken a significant risk and jumped into a LaGrange point between the sun and Hesperus I. Thaddeus' fleet was intended to destroy the Hesperus II facilities, not seize them, and he brought no ground forces or transport ships with his fleet. His arrival caught the defenders by surprise, but Thaddeus was unprepared for the arrival of the Endeavor and the Granite, and the Lyrans were determined to mount a ferocious defense of the key world. The Bucharest was the only vessel Thaddeus commanded that mounted a Lithium-Fusion Battery, but unfortunately for Thaddeus, both the Endeavor and the Granite also mounted LF batteries, a result of their refurbishment by the SLDF a few years prior to the Amaris Civil War.
Having used their LF batteries to execute an emergency jump to the LaGrange point between Hesperus II and its moon to allow them to reach orbital positions above Hesperus II in time to assist the defending forces, the Endeavor and the Granite targeted the two League cruisers, exchanging furious broadsides with their opponents in a fashion akin to the blue water naval battles of old on Terra, but after several broadsides it became apparent that the more modern Devastator was swiftly getting the upper hand against the much older Granite. Faced with the potential loss of the entire battle, Dewey ordered the Granite to ram the Devastator, the Lyran cruiser driving its prow deep into the bowels of its opponent, pushing both of them out of orbit and into a spiral towards the surface of Hesperus II while the Endeavor and the Skulker continued to battle each other.
When Dewey became aware of the rapid descent of both ships towards the planet he had the Granite pull itself free of the Devastator using its manoeuvring drive, the two ships finally separating as their hulls began visibly glowing from the friction of atmospheric entry.The venerable Granite fought for several minutes to remain above the atmosphere, but it became apparent that she could no longer maneuver effectively and Dewey ordered his crew to abandon ship. The Endeavor vanquished the Skulker and swiftly recovered the crew of the Granite, and With both League cruisers vanquished, the League fleet no longer had a clear advantage over the Lyran defenders and retreated even as three squadrons of attack DropShips were detected lifting off from Hesperus II to help close the gap in the orbital defenses left by the attack.
The Granite and the Devastator burned up together in the atmosphere of Hesperus II, the last remains of the veteran ship and her vanquished opponent crashing violently into the surface close to the vital factories she had died protecting.
- First Succession War, p. 63-64, "The Third Battle (vs. Marik)"
- House Steiner (The Lyran Commonwealth), p. 50, "Attacks on Hesperus II"
- Technical Readout: 2750, p. 132-133, "Aegis"
- Technical Readout: 3057, p. 144-145, "Aegis (Heavy Cruiser)"
- Technical Readout: 3057 Revised, p. 142-143, "Aegis (Heavy Cruiser"