Fiefdom of Randis
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|Fiefdom of Randis|
|Time period:||2988 – ?|
|Capital world:||Randis IV|
|Ruler title:||Grand Knight|
|Military:||Brotherhood of Randis|
The Fiefdom of Randis is a one-system Deep Periphery state arising from a declaration of solidarity by Erdelmaine Randis, who simultaneously renamed the planet Randis IV and established the cultist Brotherhood of Randis.
The fiefdom, formed by a group of religious warriors who patterned themselves as modern Knights Templar, consists of exactly one tropical world, Randis IV, located between the Outworlds Alliance and the Taurian Concordat. In 2988, Erdelmaine Randis, a disillusioned Marik MechWarrior commander, landed on the then-named Hope IV (also known as Lost Hope) while seeking a new purpose in life. He found it in the beleaguered population, suffering under harassment from Dispossessed MechWarriors and other disenfranchised pirates. By gathering together a small cadre of MechWarriors, he proclaimed the new Fiefdom of Randis was now under the protection of his Brotherhood of Randis. 
The state enjoyed a meager but steady income, thanks in part to the Brotherhood's off-world contracts. The population numbered somewhere between three and five thousand, mostly unskilled laborers. Intentions to industrialize the state had not borne out, as the Brotherhood had instead focused on their training in the art of BattleMech combat to the exclusion of most everything else. 
After the accession of Galahad Frews to Grand Knight of the Brotherhood in 3037, the fiefdom began to enjoy a new found respect from its neighboring planets. Its status as trader stopover for repairs & resupply continued, but other than the existence as a protected realm, it held little value. By 3047, Frews' efforts at improving the planet had resulted in the small towns of Randis being connected by a modern transportation infrastructure, including rails, as well as each being equipped with storage and trading facilities. New spaceports were constructed to entice more off-world traders and the population had begun to develop their farms into more profitable enterprises. Though Frews was ousted from his position of leadership by Lucas Beckett, he still had ample support and authority with the people, some who did prefer to see him once again as Grand Knight.
The Fiefdom of Randis was the only official trading partner for the breakaway Calderon Protectorate in 3067, supplying the new nation with food surplus to the Fiefdom's requirements in exchange for industrial-quality diamonds and small supplies of various rare heavy metals that the Protectorate was extracting from mines on the planet Oscar.
Reports available in 3073 suggested that the Fiefdom had the manufacturing capability to produce ammunition, though not components. Concern had been expressed regarding increased pirate attacks upon the world, with the suggestion the Word of Blake, Outworlds Alliance or Taurian Concordat might have been behind them (possibly due to issues any of the three states had with the Brotherhood).
The Dark Age
By 3081 the Fiefdom of Randis was manufacturing BattleMechs based on RetroTech technology and was purchasing small quantities of the Star Dagger aerospace fighter from the Calderon Protectorate to equip local defense forces with. The ties between the Fiefdom and the Calderon Protectorate grew in the early years after the Jihad, as did those between the Fiefdom and the Filtvelt Coalition; by 3085 the three nations had established an exchange programme for students and staff teaching at the various military training institutes within each nation, despite the unusual nature of the training the Brotherhood engaged in. The Brotherhood did lose some monks to other nations after experiencing the training programmes in other nations, but the Brotherhood held no ill-will toward those who defected; most of those monks who travelled to the Coalition or the Protectorate returned with a renewed sense of dedication to the ideals of the Brotherhood. The influx of aerospace fighters also led to the Brotherhood expanding the programme at their monastery to include aerospace training, in hopes that they would be able to extend the protection the Brotherhood could provide beyond the surface of Randis.
The Fiefdom benefitted from the development of the Hope Industrial Works economically after the Jihad; the RetroTech 'Mechs produced there provided substantial profits that the Brotherhood divided into two parts - one part was used to provide for the refugees who had flocked to Randis, while the other part was used to upgrade the Brotherhood's equipment.
Co-operation between the Fiefdom and other nations continued, and in 3100 the government of Grand Knight William Dirac signed a number of pacts - both economic and military - with its two closest allies, the Calderon Protectorate and the Filtvelt Coalition. These pacts brought a number of benefits to the Fiefdom, such as improved BattleMech technology - allowing the Fiefdom to upgrade its iconic home-produced HawkWolf 'Mech - with raw materials from the Randis system being used to not only initiate a number of small terraforming projects in the Protectorate but also to support BattleMech production in the Coalition.
The level of cooperation between the Fiefdom, the Coalition and the Protectorate was tested in 3128; a bandit raiding force from the Tortuga Dominions a battalion in size raided Randis and inflicted substantial damage on the Hope Industrial Works. Grand Knight Dirac called on his allies for a retaliatory strike, and in 3129 the Fiefdom embarked on Operation TRIDENT in conjunction with the Protectorate and the Coalition. Operation TRIDENT saw all three nations combine forces to strike at the Tortuga Dominions, with forces from all three nations working alongside each other on the various Dominion worlds. The campaign saw the Brotherhood's First Battalion fight alongside battalions drawn from the Second Taurian Pride and the Thumper Assault Regiment for almost a year.
Operation TRIDENT was a notable success, and between the end of the operation and 3145 raids on Randis from the Dominion were rare; the Fiefdom enjoyed a decade of industrial and cultural expansion, and in 3145 the establishment of a mining operation on Eminence, Randis' moon, was proposed - a major civic project for the small Periphery realm. The drop in raids also allowed the Hope Industrial Works to expand significantly, not only upgrading to produced more advanced 'Mechs but also expanding the designs available, expanding the capabilities of the Brotherhood in turn.
References in fiction
In 3073, novelist Clyde Cutler released a book titled Dark Periphery, in which he tied the events of the John Paul II Square Massacre to a missing construction crew from Sandro Manufacturing, and finally to the Brotherhood on Randis IV. His novel suggested that the Brotherhood was charged with protecting the Vatican's historical valuables smuggled off Terra in 2768, basing this conjecture on their missions of (non-profit) mercy.
- The use of the report contained in Jihad Conspiracies: Interstellar Players 2 is predicated on the use of the verifiable interviews of two historians on the Universal Truth program, as well as the interview of author Clyde Cutler on the same program. The novelization of the history of the Brotherhood is not afforded the same level of validity as the two historians' interview, due to its fictional nature.
- The Periphery (sourcebook), p. 62
- The Periphery (sourcebook), p. 129
- The Periphery, 2nd Edition, p. 76
- Field Manual: Periphery, p. 116
- Handbook: Major Periphery States, p. 129, "Under Siege: Economics in a Breakaway Nation"
- Jihad Conspiracies: Interstellar Players 2, pp. 40-44
- Jihad: Final Reckoning, p. 117, "Lesser Periphery States"
- Jihad: Final Reckoning, p. 117, "Calderon Protectorate"
- Field Manual: 3085, p. 133, "Fiefdom of Randis"
- Field Manual: 3085, p. 135, "Fiefdom of Randis"
- Technical Readout: 3145 Mercenaries, p. 44, "HWK-4F Hawkwolf"
- Field Manual: 3145, p. 185, "Fiefdom of Randis"
- Field Manual: 3145, p. 186, "Fiefdom of Randis"
- Field Manual: 3145, p. 188, "Fiefdom of Randis"