- This article is about both the "real" Thomas Marik, who became "The Master" who masterminded the Word of Blake Jihad, and the body double who ruled over the Free Worlds League as Thomas Marik (presumably with the real Thomas Marik's consent and possibly even following his orders for a time at least). Later the parts about the double will be split to Thomas Halas.
Thomas Marik (March 10, 2990 – April 2, 3081) was born on (Jaspin, Marik) the seventh son of Janos Marik from his first wife, Hilda Lauber. He was described as soft-spoken, with an aptitude for science and technology. In 3021 his father secretly designated Thomas as his heir.
After he was scarred during a bomb blast in 3035 that killed his father, Thomas Marik was replaced with a body double by ComStar. Through his double he claimed the Captain-Generalcy of the Free Worlds League from 3036 until it hopelessly fractured during the 3070s. The double (who later became known as Thomas Halas) led the Free Worlds League to greater unity, economic prosperity, and centralization than it had ever experienced, while the real Thomas Marik became a fanatical follower of Conrad Toyama and joined the Word of Blake when they separated from ComStar. He became the shadowy figure known as "The Master", the true mastermind of the Jihad.
- 1 Biography
- 2 Philosophical and/or political views
- 3 Quotes
- 4 Ranks and Titles
- 5 Portrait Gallery
- 6 References
- 7 Bibliography
Since Thomas was the seventh in line to the throne, he never conceived of the notion that he would someday become Captain-General, nor did he seem to desire the position. Instead, he threw himself into his love of technology. At the age of sixteen (in 3006) he joined ComStar with his father's blessings, where he demonstrated a real knack with technical pursuits.
He joined the Explorer Corps, where he served for seven years. He then spent many more years as a deputy chief of maintenance at various HPG stations. In the 3020s, he was allowed to pursue research in medicine and astrophysics. The 3020s also saw Janos Marik negotiate for Thomas' release to be named as Janos' heir. With four of his older siblings dead, one all but disinherited, and the last found wanting, Janos decided to make his seventh child his heir. ComStar allowed this, hoping that Thomas would be more amicable to them than previous Marik rulers. The proper documents were signed on Procyon on 3021.
While serving at the ComStar relay station on the Lyran Commonwealth world of Teukros in 3025 Thomas already began to prepare himself for the task of leading the Free Worlds League one day, and studied ROM reports to learn about politics on top of his regular scientific workload.
Thomas was eventually promoted to Precentor of the HPG station on Son Hoa, where he was when circumstances found him. The Duchy of Andurien seceded from the Free Worlds League in 3030. Roughly a month later, Captain-General Janos Marik suffered a debilitating stroke. When his son Duggan and nephew Duncan struggled for control, Grand Duke Christopher Halas of Oriente contacted Thomas. Thomas appeared before Parliament in 3031 with documents that showed that he was Janos' designated heir. Thomas then ruled ably in his father's name, much to the dismay of ComStar and Halas, who had both believed that he would be easy to control. In 3035, Janos had recovered, so he resumed the position of ruling Captain-General.
In the same year, Janos called a meeting to discuss ways the bring the Duchy of Andurien back into the League. Duncan was called away only moments before a bomb exploded. Although he was never officially indicted, Duncan Marik himself is generally held to be the perpetrator of the bomb attack. It was initially believed that all inside had perished, so Duncan Marik assumed the title of Captain-General, which went unopposed by Janos' three remaining children, and declared war on Andurien. Unfortunately for Duncan, his attempts to reconquer the wayward Duchy were bogged down in a protracted war and his popularity plummeted.
Introducing the body double
Janos' legitimate heir, Thomas, was narrowly rescued from Duncan Marik's bomb attack by ComStar, but his extensive injuries required the use of bionics to save him. It was then decided that a body double should take his place as Captain-General of the Free Worlds League, ostensibly because the people of the Free Worlds League carry strong sentiments against "cyborgs", including prosthetics as well as cybernetic enhancements.
It ultimately remains uncertain to what extent the real Thomas Marik, who always pulled the strings from behind the scenes henceforth, had or even desired control over the rule that his double subsequently exerted over the Free Worlds League in his stead, while Thomas himself became a religious zealot, embracing the teachings of Conrad Toyama.
With the popular "Thomas Marik" back after more than a year, an enthusiastic Parliament acceded to his many demands in order to be rid of Duncan. Most of these requests were laws that concentrated more power in Captain-General's hands than there had ever been before, including veto power. Duncan made one last-ditch effort to remain in power by forcing a victory over the Andurien troops in the field, but he died in his failed 3037 attack.
"Thomas", now Captain-General, decided to cement his power by much the same means. Leading a much more measured response, he eventually reclaimed Andurien and rebel Dame Catherine Humphreys in 3040. Though she died from a heart attack while awaiting trial, he pardoned many military and political leaders to aid reconciliation. This paid off when many members of the former Defenders of Andurien joined a new federal force that Thomas created, the Free Worlds Legionnaires.
The new Captain-General sought stability and peace above all else. Though his realm was unaffected by the Clan invasion, he still traveled to Outreach in 3051 for the summit concerning how to deal with them. There, he provided the voice of reason, the perfect counterpoint to Romano Liao. After she stormed out, "Thomas" and Prince Hanse Davion agreed that the FWL would convert its industry to provide refit packages to Federated Commonwealth troops so that they could more effectively combat the Clans through using the advanced Star League technology provided by the FWL. In exchange, Hanse offered to treat Marik's son and heir Joshua and his leukemia at the New Avalon Institute of Science.
The League continued to provide refit packages, even after the temporary defeat of the Clans and the Truce of Tukayyid, and the League's industry grew larger and richer with a guaranteed market for its new, high-tech goods. As the flow of refits slowed, "Thomas" directed the Free Worlds League Military to purchase them, resulting in a technologically sophisticated BattleMech force. This force was soon put to the test.
The fallout of Primus Myndo Waterly's Operation Scorpion and her subsequent assassination by Precentor Martial Anastasius Focht led to a schism within ComStar. Focht and newly-elected Primus Sharilar Mori decided to reform the order and remove of many of its mystical trappings, but there was a group of reactionaries who did not agree with these changes. Sticking to the old ways, they seceded from the secularized order as the radical splinter group Word of Blake in 3052. They were a very diverse group in the beginning, united only through their disapproval of the changes within ComStar. Although they initially lacked a coherent leadership, Thomas Marik was almost certainly among their leaders right from the start.
Early on, the Captain-General of the Free Worlds League (Thomas' double, acting as Thomas) allowed tens of thousands of Word of Blake zealots to settle on the FWL world of Gibson. This was almost certainly the real Thomas Marik's doing. He was named Primus-in-exile by them, which was apparently more a honorary title at the time as the various factions of the Word of Blake could not agree on a real leader. The Word also took over the administration of HPGs from ComStar wherever possible, ensuring them a source of revenue.
War of 3057
In 3057, Joshua Marik lost his battle with leukemia and died while in the care of the Federated Commonwealth. In his inexperience, the new FedCom ruler Victor Steiner-Davion fell back on a plan his father had created that dealt with such a contingency. Fearing that the Captain-General would cease the flow of upgrades, Victor instituted Operation Doppelganger, replacing Joshua with a body double. Although he never intended to place a pawn on the throne of the Free Worlds League, when Thomas discovered the switch that seemed the logical goal of the plan.
Following the discovery of Joshua's death and replacement by a double, the Free Worlds League made a tentative alliance with Chancellor Sun-Tzu Liao of the Capellan Confederation to punish the Federated Commonwealth for this duplicity. The two nations launched a joint invasion with the goal of regaining all of the territories Thomas' father had lost during the Fourth Succession War, with stunning success. The FWL ended the offensive after having recaptured their worlds.
Now an elder statesman of the Inner Sphere, "Thomas" traveled to Tharkad to take part in the First Whitting Conference in 3058 where the Star League was resurrected. Here, Victor Steiner-Davion all but told "Thomas" that he knew he was not the real son of Janos Marik, but Victor did nothing as the false Thomas was a stabilizing influence on the Star League Council.
The Free Worlds League was relatively quiet through the late 3050s and early 3060s, until the FedCom Civil War. During that war, Thomas' half-sister Kristen Marik and her mercenary unit, Kristen's Krushers, were garrisoning Coventry when they were attacked by Lyran troops. The false Thomas did nothing to help the woman who was supposedly his little sister, though Marshall Jeremy Brett (in defiance of a direct order from him) rescued what was left of the unit on Arcadia. The world was held as a protectorate through the end of the war, after which "Thomas" returned it to the Lyran Alliance.
At the 3064 Whitting Conference, "Thomas" nominated the Word of Blake for entrance into the Star League. While this was obviously desirable to him, as it would give him a member that would basically vote the way he wanted, it was also an incredibly desirable outcome to the Toyama faction of the Word. This faction contained the radical Sixth of June, led by none other than (the real) Thomas Marik, "The Master". The real Thomas Marik believed that the Word of Blake would come to greatness through three "transfers of power," the last of which was their membership in the Star League. A ComStar audit of Blakist funding turned up some corruption of the funds paid to them by the Free Worlds, but the Captain-General's internal audit revealed a much more disturbing situation. Incredible amounts of M-bills had been siphoned off to the Word of Blake, which even Precentor William Blane could not account for. Blane and the false Thomas concluded that only the real Thomas Marik could have been responsible for the numbers. With that revelation, "Thomas" resigned as Primus-in-exile.
The year 3067 saw the greatest challenge to the Captain-General's rule. Kristen's daughter Alys Rousset-Marik started the Great Debate. She argued that Resolution 288, the legislation the established the Captain-General as a permanent position, should no longer be in effect, as there is no emergency (which 288 is contingent upon). With the Free Worlds League at peace and the Star League resurrected, she argued, the office of the Captain-General should revert to a position that was assigned as needed. While this took much of the false Thomas' attention, it ultimately came to naught.
The Fourth Whitting Conference in 3067 saw the dissolution of the Star League. When the Capellan Confederation, Federated Suns, and host Lyran Alliance announced their intentions to pull out of the League, outgoing First Lord Christian Mansdottir called for a vote of no-confidence in the League with the intention of forcing them back in. Even with the admission of the provisional members, the vote failed and the Star League dissolved. The Word of Blake, especially Thomas Marik's Sixth of June, were incensed and attempted to force the Alliance and Suns back into the League through intimidating force aimed at their respective capitals. When that failed, the Blakists engulfed the Inner Sphere and near Periphery in their Jihad.
"Thomas" finally attempted to break his dependency on the Blakists, to which they responded by using a chemical attack to kill the members of Parliament and the 1st Knights of the Inner Sphere. They also revealed the knowledge that the Captain-General was an impostor placed on the throne by ComStar. Despite that, the false Thomas attempted to stay on, but was deposed by Thomas' brother, Paul in 3069. Paul put his daughter Corinne on the throne, though she did not prove to be as malleable as the Word had hoped. Others attempted to claim the Captain-Generalcy, namely Therese Marik and Kirc Cameron-Jones, leading to four different Captain-Generals and effectively shattering the Free Worlds League as a political entity (a situation that persisted into the 3130s).
Marriage and children
Thomas Marik (the "Real" Thomas Marik) was survived by one illegitimate child, Isis. His only legitimate child, Joshua (actually the son of Thomas Halas), died in 3057 while being treated for his leukemia on New Avalon. (Thomas Halas later had three other children, but by this time he was revealed to have been an impostor.)
Death and afterward
Thomas Marik perished along with his Jihad. On April 2, 3081, the Master and his protege, Calvin McIntyre, were killed by Regulan WarShips as they bombarded the city of Zachariah on the Blakist-held world of Circinus. His ashes were interred in secret on Kwamashu in the Duchy of Andurien. Following the fall of the HPG grid in 3132, Republic of the Sphere Ghost Knights stole them as part of a plot to distract Andurien and other former Free Worlds League states from the Republic as it restructured during Fortress Republic.
Philosophical and/or political views
At least for the duration of his interim rule from 3030 to 3035 he proved an able ruler with a genuine interest in leading the Free Worlds League and the welfare of its people, as shown in his extensive preparation for the position. Although initially described as soft-spoken, intelligent, learned and reserved, Thomas Marik became a fanatical devotee of the radical teachings of Primus Conrad Toyama at some point, presumably after suffering heavy injury in the bomb blast of 3035. The Jihad was launched after his interpretation of one of Toyama's prophecies did not come to fruition.
It remains unknown to which extent Thomas Marik later controlled his double who ruled the Free Worlds League in Thomas' stead with genuine care for its people, to the point of ultimately opposing Word of Blake and the real Thomas Marik. Thomas Marik's impostor did his best to concentrate political power in the Captain-General. He stripped the provinces of many of their rights and powers, created military brigades that were personally loyal to him and the Free Worlds League as a whole, cemented ties with the Duchy of Oriente and secured their military units for his own use, and stripped other provincial military units of their provincial loyalties.
"Have you met this 'Master'? In the flesh? Spoken to him face to face? I thought not. If you had, you wouldn't be questioning my motives. Believe me, he doesn't care about the Free Worlds. At first, perhaps, but the last time we communicated it was clear he thought even Myndo Waterly was a bleeding-heart liberal. You know what this is in his eyes? This is Scorpion, writ large. His attempt to outdo the Primus he pretty much regards as a god, Toyama. He's using you."
- -"Thomas Marik" criticizes The Master, when confronted by his "brother", Paul Marik, August 9, 3069
"We did our best, my young friend. Now it's up to them..."
- -Thomas Marik/The Master's last words, addressed to a dying Calvin McIntyre.
Ranks and Titles
|Captain-General of the Free Worlds League
| Succeeded by|
|Duke of Atreus and Marik
| Succeeded by|
- House Marik Sourcebook, p. 141
- Principles of Desolation, p.??
- 20-Year Update
- Field Manual: Free Worlds League
- Stackpole, Michael A., Blood Legacy
- Jihad Hot Spots: 3070, p.??, "The Shrouded Blade"
- Jihad: Final Reckoning, p. 7
- Jihad Hot Spots: 3070, p. 5
- Dawn of the Jihad
- Grave Covenant
- Handbook: House Marik
- House Marik (The Free Worlds League)
- Ideal War
- Jihad: Final Reckoning
- Beas, Herbert A. II, Epitaph for a Realm, Wizkids Games. Accessed 2 December 2007.
- Jihad Hot Spots: 3070
- Jihad Hot Spots: 3072
- Patriots and Tyrants
- Prince of Havoc
- Principles of Desolation
- Storms of Fate
- Surrender Your Dreams