Zane Nova Cat
Zane resented being in Inner Sphere, believing that his Clan purity was being corrupted and set himself on a quest to save his Clan from itself. He later had visions that led him from his narrow-minded views to try to warn his Clan of its coming conflict with Clan Ghost Bear.
Zane was originally part of Rho Galaxy stationed on Bearclaw when the Nova Cat Abjuration began in May of 3060. The world was attacked by Clan Hell's Horses and Clan Snow Raven when they arrived to root out the Cats from the world. Bearclaw's HPG system was down, so they never received word of the Abjuration. Zane later survived the fighting and traveled with other Nova Cats to the Inner Sphere after the other Clans suddenly attacked all the Clan holdings. He was haunted by the nightmares of his experiences.
He and his fellow warriors were rescued in June of 3061 by the crew of the Nova Cat Battlecruiser Severen Leroux in the Irece system. They turned on their rescuers and attacked a crewmember after seeing that he was wearing an SLDF uniform. A warrior issued a Trial of Grievance against him, but after losing the fight to the crewmember several warriors attacked the crewmember, severely beating him. The fight was ended by Elemental guards, who later were used to guard them until Khan Santin West could interview the survivors.
Then Zane was assigned to the world of Yamarovka, where rest of his new Galaxy had been stationed by July, 3061. He was also part of what has become known as the 1st Dragoncat Cluster. The Cluster was assigned Star Colonel Jal Steiner, a former Clan Cloud Cobra warrior, to lead it. On his arrival, Jal Steiner announced that he had chosen Zane's Trinary as his own. Zane continued to challenge him and others over the changes the Clan was undertaking.
Zane had only one friend due to his neverending anger and discord, Star Commander Samuel. Samuel has tried daily to open Zane's eyes to the world around him and leave his anger behind.
On the arrival of Star Colonel Steiner, Zane's trinary was introduced to their DCMS liaison officer, Chu-sa Palmer Yoshio, who also served as the commanding officer of the 11th Alshain Avengers 3rd Battalion. Steiner also announced that Dragoncats would begin to cross-train with Avengers in a series of wargames outside the city of Yama.
Zane continued to challenge the Star Colonel with multiple Trials of Refusal, fueled by his rage over changes in daily Nova Cat life.
After a chance meeting between Chu-sa Palmer and Zane in one of the mock battles, something began to change. From the first moment of the encounter Zane experienced skills he had not had before, fighting and doing considerable damage to Yoshio's Bishamon. After the battle, Zane retrieved a piece of Yoshio's 'Mech armor as a vineer. After this strange experience, Zane was convinced that it was the time to invoke his first Rite of Vision.
On his way to petition his Galaxy Commander Higall to allow him to travel to Irece to begin his vision quest, he meets with Chu-sa Palmer. He and Palmer briefly talk, as Palmer asks he was only a MechWarrior, with such skills he used against him. Zane, taken aback by this, only could say he did not have answer to his question, but would tell him once he returns from Nova Cat capital. Unexpectedly, Palmer ends up traveling with Zane to Irece to learn more about Nova Cat ways.
On Irece in 21st August, 3062, Zane by chance arrived on the world in time to witness trials to position for Oathmaster of Nova Cats. Normally this is exciting time for the Nova Cats, but not for Zane, who feels that this is another sign of corruption of his clan. With Biccon Winters' "retirement" to work for the newly formed SLDF, that whomever was the winner of these trials would be over see his Rite of Vision. There he and Yoshi witness Minoru Nova Cat, newly adopted into his clan, take the first step to compete for the position of the Clan's Oathmaster.
That same day, Zane begun to travel to mountain called Tengoku. Using his love for mountaineering, he climbs mountain to a plateau he located via satellite maps. He climbs for 56 hours straight before reaching the plateau. There builds a fire where he enacts his Rite of Vision. He throws his vineers of Yoshi's mech armor and the command patch from his former Galaxy Commander who died on Bearclaw into the fire. In his vision he sees a strange sight, of what he believes to be image of garnet dragon appear in the fire with what he can make to be a Nova Cat. After few seconds, he sees a second dragon appear. Identical to the first except it was color of ebony. Garnet dragon, aware of it existence tries to look for it but is unable to find it. Moment later the Ebony dragon moved a terrifying speed, but not at the garnet dragon but out of Zane's vision. Suddenly, a white blur holding a standard of which resembles some kind of canine. The white blur strikes both the Garnet dragon and Nova Cat, resulting with blood exploding everywhere.
Zane comes out his vision confused and shocked. However he finds he not alone. That his Clan's new Oathmaster Minoru Nova Cat had arrived as his vision finished. Angered by Minoru presence, he is barely responds to Minoru confirmation of Zane receiving what he senses is a vision that could aide his clan. Zane does not share what he saw with Minoru, but only knowledge he may have had a vision. Minoru tells him he knows he despises him, but tells him he has changed and entered new life. He tells Zane he must ponder the vision which he has been given.
As Zane and Yoshi returned to Yamarovka, Yoshi questions why Zane feels so strongly about raise of Minoru into the position of Oathmaster. Zane tells him that by having the former prince in the position of Oathmaster, gives Combine's coordinator some degree of control of his Clan. Yoshi agrees, but counters in almost bitter tone that Combine payed price for Minoru raise to power. They've given up son of the dragon, to better aid Clan Nova Cat.
Then Zane began to notice paralell to his own feelings of his Clan, which Yoshi feels his House is being corrupt in almost same matter. Out of curiosity, Zane asks Yoshi if he had ever heard of something called Ebony Dragon. Yoshi grows numerously pale from the remark, asks Zane to say it again as if he hadn't heard him. Zane dismisses, it saying he had heard it somewhere, and knew House Kurita had some kind worship of dragons. Yoshi could only say hadn't heard term "Ebony Dragon" before.
In September, Zane had returned to Yamarovka and joined his 1st Dragoncat Cluster on field in mock-battles against the 11th's 1st and 2nd battalions. He also learn with great distain that a his clan was forming the 2nd Dragoncat Cluster in his absence. Zane's scout star runs into heavy lance of battlemechs and he Jenner IIC is shot down by one of them. Couple days later, Zane sent to garage where battlemechs of the cluster are serviced. He discovers new machine had never seen before. Tech informs him he indeed the pilot of the Pack Hunter.
The name strikes Zane like nothing before, when Samuel arrives to congratulate Zane in given such a mech. Zane smiles and confines to Samuel it feels like it wanted to be named. That he will name it the Ebony Dragon. Samuel says he surprised says "Black Dragon is a strong name, Zane." As Samuel comments on the Zane naming the mech with a name strongly binds with culture of Combine. Zane is struck with amazement, realizing his early question to Yoshi, if worded differently may have given a different answer to his question to him. Zane takes out his Ebony Dragon and fights a trial against his Star Colonel near Zeta's command compound near city of New Circe. There he faced down Jal Steiner's Shadow Cat, work over come his emotions that mech he was piloting was acquired instead of won by trial. Working down his emotions, he became calm and knew he would win his battle against Steiner. After winning his battle, Zane tried to seek out Yoshi to re-ask his question regarding the Black Dragon, but missed him.
Later Samuel congratulates Zane and takes him to dinner in the city of Yama. After three evenings of dinning, Zane made understand by Samuel that his narrow views of Inner Sphere people have clouded his mind like so many others. Zane realizes his Inner Sphere people are no different than people of the Clan, that he been treating then less human. That he had it wrong, that his quest to purify his clan's soul was other way around. To purify his, and his hatred he been harboring since before leaving Bearclaw.
In late September, while Zane attempting to have his Pack Hunter re-armed with Ferro-Fibrous Armor, a tech over hears him commenting to his Black Dragon. Zane hears the tech gasp, turns to find him man was taken bondsman from Draconis Combine. Zane commands him tell him why he was shocked hear say name of his mech. He explains what Black Dragon means in his culture.
On by October 1st on Plains of Horses near New Circe, Zane his fellow Dragoncats gather to participate in large exercise against entire 11th Alshain Avengers, but discovered that it had been cancelled. With word of the cancellation, Zane finally understands his vision he had plateau of Tengoku. He rushes to Star Colonel Steiner, and informs him that his vision has told him that Avengers are attacking Alshain. He urges the colonel to stop them, by seizing the Avenger's dropship. If the Avengers attack them, they this will confirm his vision of they are indeed acting outside of the Draconis Combine High Command's authority. Steiner, trusting Zane's explanation of him receiving a vision. Informs Galaxy Command Higall of the situation. Higall, informs Steiner, that rest of Zeta would only defend the Command Compound and not interfere with fight between Dragoncats and 11th.
Through these actions, Nova Cat dropships of the Zeta locked and armed their weapons on the Avenger's dropships. Nova Cat dropships commander reach agreement with Avenger's ships not to interfere with coming fight or they would destroy each other in meaningless fire fight.
After securing of the dropships, Nova Cats asked Avengers to stand down for 48 hours until they could confirm the orders for the Avengers to deploy. The Avengers fire on 1st Dragoncats in bid try punch through to the dropships. Through gale rain storm, the two force clashed on the Plain of Horses. The Cluster taking heavy damage, despite hold off the entire Regiment for hours. Zane was put in command of his own provisional Star as Jal Steiner re-organized the his forces after taking damage. While Yoshi's Third Battalion took brunt of the damage, being ahead of other two battalions. Only the arrival of the first and second battalions did Avenger manage savage martinal victory after series hit and run sorties by the Nova Cats cluster.
In mists of the fighting, Zane & Yoshi tried to seek each other out settle their fight. Finally as night battle be pushed closer to the drop port, did Zane find Yoshi. Then did Zane announced his challenge to Yoshi to ritual of Zellbrigen. Yoshi announced he accepted challenge of one on one combat. Yoshi asked before beginning this battle, why have they fought this very night. Zane explained, thought saying he does expected to be believed. That he had vision that the 11th was to attacked Ghost Bears's homeworld. They would trigger a war that would devastate the Combine. Yoshi angerly responded he was wrong, that his regiment among others who were going to Alshain. They would cleanse Combine of the Clan once and for all. He then out honor of their comradeship, offer Hegira to him.
After hearing this his offer of Hegira, Zane tried to feel anger and bitterness that been inside of him, found it was sorrow. Sorrow for Yoshi, thinking away he had, thinking road forward they need purify everything but ones self. Finally accepting that he must stop Yoshi at any cost, he found peace at last, finally found his path. He then told Yoshi that he purified himself and ask him join him.
Amist of the battle, lone crippled Blackjack fired its remaining autocannon into the head of Zane's mech, killing him. This breach of Zellbrigen, triggered deployment of remaining Zeta Galaxy clusters into battle. Yoshi quickly dispatches in rage of mechwarrior who killed Zane. Yoshi, order his forces fall back from oncoming Galaxy's clusters. Thinking to himself he must survive, and that Zane death may been his victory.
After Zane's death, Ghost Bears were attacked by three of the four Alshain Avenger regiments and cleanly wiped the all Black Dragon controlled regiments out. Unfortunately, Zane's final act did not prevent Dominion-Combine War from occurring.
Minoru Nova Cat used Zane as means to reunite his Clan over the divisions which rippled through it since the coming to the Inner Sphere. After living every horror of the Nova Cat Abjurement, Zane had triumphed over his own doubts and fears. Minoru would let every Nova Cat in the Clan know Zane's story. He would be put into the Clan's Remembrance, effectively be immortalized.
Later, the plateau which Zane gained his vision was named after him.
- Technical Readout: 3058 Upgrade, p. 190 - Star Captain Samuel Devalis
- Heretic's Faith, p. 1 - Zane's Plateau featured