Liberty (Individual Vincent-class WarShip)
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The Richmond was a Vincent-class corvette that served in the Star League Defense Force as the SLS Richmond during the Star League era. Abandoned or scuttled during or after the Amaris Civil War, the Richmond was located by ComStar but was either mothballed or left where it had been found due to the amount of work that was required to return it to active service. That would not happen until the schism within ComStar that led to the formation of the Word of Blake and the exodus of the Blakists to the Free Worlds League and their subsequent decision to assist the League in re-establishing a WarShip construction programme by assisting with locating, retrieving and repairing abandoned vessels such as the Richmond.
The Richmond was the first vessel to be recovered by the secret reclamation programme; located and retrieved in 3054, the Richmond was moved to the Ionus system where the League had constructed the Illium Shipyards in secret as a part of its WarShip programme. The Richmond spent two years undergoing extensive work in the shipyards before finally launching in October 3056 under a new designation, that of the FWLS Liberty. The same programme that saw the Richmond recovered and restored subsequently saw a sister ship of the same class retrieved and returned to working order; that vessel was given as a gift to the Word of Blake by the League as thanks for their assistance in the programme, and would serve the Blakists as the WoBS Blake's Redemption.
The League kept the existence of the Liberty a secret and made the ship a part of their secret fleet; by early 3059 the Liberty was one of six vessels within that fleet, serving alongside another pair of former SLDF vessels, the Essex-class destroyers FWLS Raven (formerly the SLS Oslo) and FWLS Schrack, the Zechetinu-class corvettes FWLS Attica and FWLS Karelia and an Aegis-class heavy cruiser, the FWLS Olympic. All was not well with the Liberty, however; the ship was experiencing a number of problems such as the missile guidance system for the forward bays shutting down randomly as well as a number of other issues that led the Captain of the ship, Captain William Applebaum, to devote his technical staff to working around the clock to control the issues. Captain Applebaum was convinced by this point that a second period of in-depth repair and renovation would be needed for the Liberty to become a fully combat-serviceable WarShip.
By 3067 the Liberty had been in service for more than a decade and was a part of what was publicly considered to be the largest black water navy in the Inner Sphere. The FWLS Liberty was destroyed during the opening stages of the Jihad in 3068 by Word of Blake forces.
- The destruction of the Liberty and seven other Free Worlds League WarShips unaccounted for specifically by name in sourcebooks was confirmed by the BattleTech Developer Øystein Tvedten via the Catalyst Game Labs Ask The Writers Forum:
|“|| Delphi (Thera-Class) - Destroyed by Word of Blake, 3068
Thessaly (Thera-Class) - never completed, scuttled in dock by loyalists to keep it out of blakists hands in 3068
|— Øystein Tvedten, 07 December 2013|
- Field Manual: Free Worlds League, p. 117, "FWLS Liberty"
- Field Manual: Free Worlds League, p. 116, "Aid From The Word of Blake"
- Field Manual: Updates, p. 144, "Ships Of The FWL"
- BattleTech Devloper confirms the destruction of the Liberty