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|First published||15 August 2008|
|Era||Clan Invasion era|
|Timeline||17 May 3059|
First Acquisition is a story by John Helfers that was published online on BattleCorps on 15 August 2008. It was also published in print in the fifth BattleCorps print anthology, Counterattack, in 2014.
|“||Be careful what you wish for, is an ancient proverb and one that any aspiring hunter should be wary of. Finding the best, can sometimes be hard on the body.||”|
Taurian expatriate Kithain Valas, a capable and highly professional military man and ex-MechWarrior, has fallen on hard times on Lothario. Following the recent conquest of the Lothian League by the Marian Hegemony and the government's surrender, he joined militia elements who continued the hopeless fight and lost his BattleMech, his career and his family. Valas has difficulties in civilian jobs, but refuses to become a criminal.
In the early morning hours of 17 May 3059 a contact has arranged a meeting with a potential employer who turns out to be a professional bounty hunter in a PA(L) suit (though when asked he denies that he is "the Bounty Hunter"). The bounty hunter introduces himself as Armitage. He provides Valas with a keycard and a laser gun and puts him on a trial mission: Valas is to enter a warehouse and arrest a Lyran accountant wanted for embezzlement.
In the warehouse, Valas finds a very large brute who he thinks may be an Elemental. Trying to arrest the mute hulk Valas discovers that his laser pistol, although charged, is dyfunctional. Following a hard fight that inflicts considerable damage on the warehouse he manages to incapacitate the hulk.
Armitage arrives and confirms the man to be Jonas, the wanted Lyran accountant, whose tongue was cut out by a previous employer. He also tells Valas that this was a rought test that had to be done in order to see if Valas was a suitable partner for Armitage, and pays him his share of the bounty minus some damages for the warehouse.
On his way out, Armitage is stunned by Valas who had re-rigged the pistol's power packs to disable the PA/L suit and the man wearing it. Valas borrows his rifle and tells Armitage that he shouldn't serach for him; he'd get in tough with Armitage, who should consider him a partner but never a lackey or apprentice. Thanking him for the interview, Valas leaves Armitage behind who recovers just as Jonas is also coming to.