Wendy Karner (born in 3028 as Wendy Sylvester) was an officer in the Armed Forces of the Federated Commonwealth and later the Armed Forces of the Federated Suns who served House Davion at the time of the Clan Invasion and the FedCom Civil War. She was more widely known for her relationship with Kai Allard-Liao prior to the start of her military career.
Early Life and Career
Wendy Sylvester was born to a family with a long, proud history of service to House Davion in general and to the elite Davion Heavy Guards in particular. As both of her parents served with the Guards, it may be assumed that she spent much of her early life growing up on New Avalon, where the Heavy Guards and her parents were based. In due time, Sylvester attended the prestigious New Avalon Military Academy, which by then was part of the New Avalon Institute of Science. While attending the academy, Sylvester met Kai Allard-Liao, son of Candace Liao, Duchess of St. Ives and Prime Minister of the St. Ives Compact, and Justin Allard, the Intelligence Secretary of the Federated Commonwealth and a top advisor to First Prince Hanse Davion. Sylvester and Allard-Liao began a relationship, and by the time of their graduation in 3049, Sylvester was determined that she and Allard-Liao would both be assigned to the Heavy Guards, and that they would ultimately be married. Allard-Liao, graduating fifth in their class, was guaranteed his first choice of assignments. However, he discovered that if he accepted the post, Sylvester herself would be unable to join the Guards as there was only one opening at that time. Rather than deprive Sylvester of serving with the regiment that was her home, Allard-Liao instead took an opening with the Tenth Lyran Guards in the Lyran half of the Federated Commonwealth, which would take him hundreds of light-years away. This would effectively end his relationship with Sylvester. When she confronted Allard-Liao on 19 May, 3049, he explained his reasons for his actions. Broken-hearted, Sylvester told him she hoped he would learn to confront his demons, then departed.
Sylvester then began her career with the Davion Heavy Guards, inheriting a BattleMech that had previously been used by her mother and grandfather. At some point she broke with family tradition by marrying outside of the regiment, and her husband poet, thus taking the surname Karner. She and the Guards reportedly saw action in the Clan Invasion, and Kerner steadily rose up the ranks. She apparently stayed in touch with Kai Allard-Liao, who soon became the best MechWarrior of his generation. By 3059, she held the rank of Kommandant and was in command of the Guards' First Battalion.
When the Second Star League was formed, the Davion Heavy Guards were chosen as part of the new Star League Defense Force. Karner took part in Operation Bulldog and she and the Guards saw action on Asgard in the first wave in May 3059, fighting alongside two battalions of the Third Benjamin Regulars, the Third Proserpina Hussars and the Com Guards' elite 278th ComGuard Division. All of the units were considered crack formations with experience against the Clans. They faced the defending Fourth Jaguar Dragoons and the Dark Prowlers Keshik, the command Trinary of Epsilon Galaxy. The Fourth Dragoons were pushed from the mountains of Odin's Retreat to the Ragnarok Plains, where Karner and her battalion lied in wait, supported by a heavy armor regiment and artillery. After an artillery bombardment, Karner and her 'Mechs met 18 Jaguar 'Mechs on a hilltop. Once the Clan warriors charged them, the Heavy Guards pulled back over the ridge where their tanks were lying in wait. The result was a one-sided slaughter, where Karner and her troops wiped out the Dragoon warriors while suffering the loss of just one MechWarrior and two tanks. Karner herself recorded one kill, a Jaguar Kodiak. Asgard was soon liberated by the new Star League Defense Force.
The Davion Heavy Guards later took part in the fighting on Schuyler in the third wave in August, joined by First Prince Victor Steiner-Davion and his Tenth Lyran Guards along with the First Genyosha, the Fourth Wolf Guards, the First St. Ives Lancers (led by her former lover, Kai Allard-Liao), and the elite 91st Division from ComStar. This was a "Dream Team" of elite Inner Sphere units, assaulting a world defended by the Fourth and Twelfth Jaguar Regulars, along with the Nu Galaxy Command Trinary and the remnants of the Second Jaguar Guards. Overwhelmed, the Jaguar forces chose to evacuate after taking losses rather than be wiped out. This move signalled a general retreat as Clan Smoke Jaguar fled the Inner Sphere. The Guards joined Prince Victor's SLDF task force when they journeyed to the Clan Homeworlds, relieving the remnants of Task Force Serpent who were fighting on Huntress. Although they did not take part in the Great Refusal on Strana Mechty, they did witness the effective end of the Clan Invasion. They then returned to the Inner Sphere, and took up their post on Galax where they defended the Federated-Boeing Interstellar shipyards. Archon-Princess Katherine Steiner-Davion stripped them of their JumpShip transport however, effectively stranding them on their new base world.
FedCom Civil War
When the FedCom Civil War broke out, the Davion Guards quickly secured Galax for the allies, but lacked the transport to intercede elsewhere - including nearby New Avalon - for some time. It was not until November 3066 that Tancred Sandoval and later Prince Victor himself were able to provide them with the JumpShips to relocate to New Avalon. The Battle of New Avalon represented the definitive conclusion of the conflict, and was also one of the bloodiest battles the Federated Suns had seen in decades. Although the fighting nearly destroyed the Guards, the allies were victorious.
Just prior to Operation Bulldog, Karner received a new Devastator BattleMech, replacing the machine that had been in her family for at least three generations. The class of 'Mech she used previously is not clear, but from her reflection on her Devastator, it may be assumed to have been a machine that retained its hand actuators.
Under the A Time of War rules, Karner gained the Forcing the Initiative, Banking the Initiative, and Overrun special abilities while commanding in the Davion Heavy Guards, as well as a 2-TP Good Reputation and Well-Connected/New Avalon traits.
- Lethal Heritage, p. 36, Wendy Sylvester states she is a couple of years younger than Kai Allard-Liao
- Lethal Heritage, pp. 36-37, Wendy Sylvester discusses her family's history with the Davion Heavy Guards
- Lethal Heritage, pp. 35-42, Wendy Sylvester's background and her break-up with Kai Allard-Liao
- Grave Covenant, p. 245, Wendy Karner's career progresses
- Grave Covenant, pp. 248-256, Karner and her troops wipe out the Jaguars on Asgard
- Grave Covenant, pp. 296-302, the Star League "Dream Team" assault on Schuyler
- Era Report: 3062, p. 32, "Factions : Davion Heavy Guards RCT", the Guards' actions after Operation Bulldog
- Field Manual: Federated Suns, p. 77, "Davion Heavy Guards RCT: Strength of the Davions", the Davion Heavy Guards after Operation Bulldog
- Field Manual: Federated Suns, p. 77, "Davion Heavy GUards RCT: Strength of the Davions", Wendy Karner's rank and position
- FedCom Civil War (sourcebook), p. 168, "Galax", the Davion Heavy Guards spend most of the Civil War on Galax
- Field Manual: Updates, p. 129, "Davion Heavy Guards", the Guards are stranded on Galax
- FedCom Civil War (sourcebook), pp. 168-171, "New Avalon", the Davion Heavy Guards take part in the battle of New Avalon
- Field Manual: Updates, p. 129, "Davion Heavy Guards", the Guards are nearly destroyed on New Avalon
- Field Manual: Updates, p. 140, "Armed Forces of the Federated Suns (Deployment as of 1 October 3067)", Karner's rank and command after the war
- Era Report: 3062, p. 141, "Federated Commonwealth : Davion Heavy Guards", the Davion Heavy Guards command abilities