BattleTech: The Animated Series/Homecoming
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This transcript of episode twelve of BattleTech: The Animated Series, Homecoming, is based off a VHS recording from the initial airing.
Female Technician (identified in the sourcebook as Olga): Pavel, we’ve been combing this sector for six months, now. There is nothing left to salvage in the Somerset system. Why do you refuse to move on?
Pavel: Unlike you Technicians, we in the Merchant Caste are nothing, if not thorough.
Olga: Thorough is hardly the first word that springs to mind.
Pavel: Ah, my sensor is picking up something. Display it on the primary screen.
Olga: Do we not yet have enough in our cargo hold?
Pavel: We, in the Merchant Caste, have a saying: there is no such thing as “enough.” Magnify image.
[The image of a tumbling Banshee, drifting in space, appears on the screen.]
Olga: Eh. Scrap.
Pavel: Perhaps, but it will help offset our fuel costs.
[The Leopard CV matches the Banshee’s trajectory and deploys a mechanical arm to grab it and draw it into the Leopard’s cargo bay. Pavel, Olga, and two guards go to check it out in the cargo hold, where it sits among clusters of large wooden crates.]
Pavel: Let us examine the goods.
[Pavel opens the Banshee cockpit. All of the Strikers leap out of the cockpit acrobatically.]
Adam: Freeze! This ship is now the property of the First Somerset Strikers.
Val: ‘Bout time they opened up that thing! It was getting’ mighty cramped in there.
[Two Elemental-sized guards charge forward but get clobbered by Val and Adam making microgravity jump kicks.]
Kylie: Don’t even think about moving!
[Adam recovers quickly from the jump kick and grabs onto a bulkhead. Val continues to spin out of control in the cargo hold.]
Adam: What are you doing, Val? I thought you said you had zero-gee combat training?
Val: I didn’t say I passed.
[Two more Clan guards race into the cargo hold. Adam shoots a rope holding crates down, and two large wooden crates drift loose and smash into the guards. The crates break open, revealing laser rifles.]
Val: Yeah! Looks like we hit the jackpot!
[The Strikers hold the civilian crew at gunpoint.]
Pavel: What do you want with us? We are not warriors.
Olga: Neither are they. This is clearly the work of Inner Sphere bandits.
Pavel: May Kerensky have mercy.
Rachel: Okay, put a lid on it. Now, who’s in charge here?
[The two Clan lower caste members glance at each other.]
Adam: Which one of you can pilot this ship down to Somerset?
[The Tech raises her hand.]]
[The Leopard CV burns towards Somerset (depicted with two large moons).]
Kylie: Those Clanners aren’t gonna know what hit ‘em.
Adam: After six months, we’re finally comin’ home.
[The Leopard CV passes close to Somerset’s moons.]
Pavel: This is Merchant Ship Prosperity, requesting permission for approach.
Somerset Control: I read you, Prosperity. Now awaiting your access code.
[Adam brandishes a laser pistol at the Clan crew.]
Adam: Now would not be a good time for heroics.
Somerset Control: Acknowledged sub-first. You are cleared for landing.
Adam: Nice work, Pavel. Now what can you tell me about the current status of the planet?
Pavel: The resistance has been crushed by our valiant Jade Falcon warriors.
Kylie: Spare us the propaganda. What do you know about the survivors?
Pavel: However, there are some hardcases who refuse to join the Clan sphere of prosperity. They are enjoying the hospitality of our re-education camp.
Adam: Where exactly is this re-education camp?
[The Leopard CV lands on the outskirts of the Somerset Military Academy. With Rachel and Val in Clan uniforms, and Adam and Kylie pretending to be prisoners in the back, the Strikers drive a truck off the ship, leaving the Clan crew tied up in the cargo hold.]
Rachel: Do you think we’ll find your brother there?
Adam: If I know Andrew, he’ll be in with the hardcases. Once we’re in with the prisoners, Kylie and I will try to locate Andrew.
Kylie: This isn’t exactly how I pictured my big homecoming.
Rachel (to Val): All right, meanwhile, we’ll get to a computer terminal and plant a virus into the orbital scanning system so the Kwaidan can land undetected.
Val: You sure you can find your way around the system?
Rachel: Oh, I hope so. I programmed it.
[The truck approaches the re-education camp. High concrete walls surround the campus of the former Somerset Military Academy.]
Adam: What have they done to this place?
Rachel: Adam, this was our home.
Adam: I know. Just remember, you’re a Clan Technician. This place means nothing to you.
[A guard (later identified as Gunther) approaches the truck when it pulls up to the main gate.]
Gunther: State your business.
Val: We found these two holed up in the wild. They actually surrendered to the Merchant Caste.
Rachel: They appear to be deeply in need of re-education.
[The guards open the truck and escort Kylie and Adam out.]
Gunther: Take them to the barracks.
[The gates slide open, allowing Adam and Kylie to enter the camp. Val tries to drive the truck after them, but the gates slide shut and the guard moves to block them.]
Gunther: Thank you. We will take it from here.
Val: Excuse me. We still need to get inside.
Gunther: And what business have you Merchants inside a restricted facility?
Rachel: We have orders to inventory the remains of its teaching facilities.
Gunther: Your scavengers already picked this place clean. You barely left the walls standing.
Rachel: What about training holovids? They can be degaussed and recycled. Battle simulators can be stripped for their circuitry.
Gunther: Those were the first things your people took!
Val: Exactly. And now we have to triple-check that nothing was overlooked, unless you insist on holding us here all day.
Gunther: Bah! The tasks you Merchant Caste dogs invent to keep yourselves occupied.
[The guard waves them through the gates.]
[Two ranks of AFFC prisoners stand in a hangar as a recorded message blares at them.]
Recording: Brethren of the Inner Sphere, as you know, your decadent rulers abandoned you long before the Clans arrived. They have been too selfishly preoccupied fighting each other to be concerned with your needs.
[A holovid projector shows the Jade Falcon logo; then two groups of ‘Mechs fighting.]
Kylie (whispered, to Adam): Any sign of your brother?
Guard: Silence! There is no talking during a re-education session!
Recording: But now is the dawn of a bright new day. The Clans have arrived to save the Inner Sphere from turmoil and chaos, establishing a wondrous, orderly society where everyone has a vital role – Warrior, Scientist, Merchant, Technician, Laborer.
[The holovid projection shows Clan OmniMechs parading past cheering crouds; Aleksandr Kerensky; insignia of the lower castes surrounding the Jade Falcon emblem – an atom for the Scientist Caste, a red Epsilon on a black oval for the Merchant Caste, a black wrench on a sky-blue diamond for the Technician Caste, and a sledgehammer standing upright with the head against a blue triangle for the Laborer Caste, all on a faded purple circular field).]
[Adam nudges the man next to him.]
Adam: I’m looking for your commander, Andrew Steiner. Is he still alive?
[The guard clubs Adam to the ground with the butt of his rifle.]
Guard: I said silence, surat!
[Adam resumes his place in the ranks. The man next to him points to an isolation cell somewhere outside the hangar.]
[Elsewhere in the camp, Val keeps a lookout.]
Val: It’s clear.
[In the former command center, everything of value has been stripped. Cables dangle out of empty sockets in the computer terminals.]
Rachel: I think I found a backup terminal outlet.
[Rachel removes a metal floor panel, revealing still-functional computer equipment.]
Rachel: I just hope it’s still active.
[Rachel plugs her belt computer into the terminal and taps some keys.]
Rachel: We’re in!
[Val nervously shuffles a deck of cards.]
Rachel: Do you mind?
Val: Sorry. Nervous.
Val: What “hmmmmm”? Is that good or bad?
Rachel: It’s what I was afraid of. The Clans have installed their own viral protection software.
Val: Can you patch into it?
Rachel: No, but I can crash it. The only problem is, they’re gonna notice.
Val: Fine. Pull the plug. This ain’t the time for subtlety.
[Rachel activates her code. The belt computer bleeps.]
Rachel: That’s it! Their orbital scanners are blind!
[Val activates his wrist communicator.]
Val: Ground crew to Kwaidan. You are clear to land. Repeat, you are clear to land.
Rachel: Now, we just sit tight until we hear from Adam.
[That evening, the guards march the prisoners back to their barracks. Kylie starts a fight with another prisoner.]
Kylie: Hey, quit shovin’!
[The guards separate the two.]
Guard: Cease this barbaric display at once!
[Adam uses the distraction to sneak off to where the other prisoner indicated his brother, Andrew, was being held. Adam finds guards patrolling the perimeter of a fenced-off enclosure containing squat metal structures.]
[In the main building, a guard patrols the hallway. Val remains on lookout while Rachel uses her belt computer and the backup terminal.]
Val: Someone’s coming.
[They grab commpads and try to look busy.]
Rachel: Uh, ah, ye, good! Very, very good! Yes, this one still has circuitry attached. Uh, would you please make a note of that?
Gunther: Technician! You will come with me!
Val: Excuse me, there a problem?
Gunther: I was not addressing you, Merchant! Our orbital tracking system is malfunctioning. You will repair it at once!
[Val follows Rachel and Gunther down the hallway.]
Val: She would like to stay and help out, but we were just about to leave for our next assignment.
Gunther: You lower caste dogs have the nerve to refuse the orders of a Warrior?! You will report to the commander and learn your place!
[On the perimeter of the fenced area, Adam attacks a guard from behind and takes his rifle. He bends a section of the fence out of place and crawls under. He runs to a window in one of the buildings.]
Adam (whispering): Andrew. Andrew Steiner.
Andrew: Adam? Is that you? Don’t tell me they got you, too. It’s all over. The Clans have taken Tharkad.
[Adam picks the electronic lock on Andrew’s cell and see his brother sporting a huge, bushy black beard.]
Adam: Don’t believe everything you hear. Easy does it, big guy.
[Adam gives Andrew his canteen.]
Adam: Can you still pilot a ‘Mech?
Andrew: Of course, but what good is that now?
Adam: We’re taking back the Academy and, after that, the rest of the planet!
Andrew: Adam, are you crazy?
Andrew: Four ‘Mechs and a truck full of blasters? We’ll never pull it off.
Adam: Wow. Those Clanners have really gotten to you. They made you forget your motto. “No guts, no galaxy.”
[The two brothers high five each other.]
Andrew: Okay, kid, let’s take our home back.
[Gunther escorts Val and Rachel into the command center.]
Gunther: Commander! I have found a Technician to repair the scanning system.
[The commander turns. It is Kristen Redmond.]
[Kristen recognizes them.]
Val: All the prison camps in all the star systems in the galaxy, and we gotta walk into hers.
Kristen: I was hoping you surats would eventually show up on Somerset. That is why I requested this assignment.
Val: I see you survived your bath back on Apollo.
Gunther: You…know each other?
Kristen: They belong to a unit that has been a constant thorn in my side. Tell me, where is your leader, your Major Adam Steiner?
Val: Never heard of him.
[Kristen backhands Val across the room.]
Val: Did anyone ever tell you your eye really sparkles when you get angry?
Gunther: Begging the Star Captain’s pardon, but could this Adam Steiner be one of the prisoners they brought in with them?
Kristen: Good thinking, Gunther. Assemble all prisoners in the courtyard!
[In the courtyard, the prisoners are lined up to watch. Val and Rachel are tied up and placed against a wall to await a firing squad.]
Kristen: Attention, prisoners. Observe the fate of those who would dare to sabotage this compound. They have only succeeded in proving, once again, that resistance is futile. Two more saboteurs stand among you. I ask them now to step forward. If you refuse, the fate of your comrades will be sealed.
[A Timber Wolf strides towards the prisoners menacingly and points its arm weapon pod at Val and Rachel.]
Kristen: Very well. Since Adam Steiner will not step forward…
Kristen: That is only one! Where is your leader? Adam Steiner, you will reveal yourself in five seconds, or all three of your cohorts will be eliminated!
[Adam appears at the wheel of the APC, driving straight for the courtyard at top speed. A laser blast shatters the windshield and forces him to swerve just before ramming the Timber Wolf’s leg. Adam jumps free of the truck, and it continues on, driverless, to smash into the OmniMech. The prisoners scream and scatter. The Timber Wolf collapses to the ground. Kylie fells her two guards with high kicks. Adam and Andrew run over to free Rachel and Val.]
Val: Nice of you to “crash” the party, Major.
Rachel: Andrew, is that really you?
Andrew: Miss me?
[Andrew and Adam use laser pistols to cut Val and Rachel free of their ropes, cutting the beam at the last second so that the ropes part perfectly, but there aren’t smoking holes through Val’s and Rachel’s chests.]
Adam: Head for the landing field!
[The Strikers and other prisoners run for the landing field. Adam and Andrew use their laser pistols to keep the guards back.]
Kristen: After them! Do not let them escape!
[Laser fire criss-crosses the prison courtyard as Jade Falcon guards respond to alarms. Adam and Andrew easily climb over the chain-link fence around the prison. Guards are preparing to fire heavier weapons at them when laser blasts from above strike around them, forcing them to scatter. A Banshee flies overhead, with Sakamoto at the controls.]
Adam (to Andrew): Did I also mention I have an aerofighter in my unit?
[The Strikers and prisoners gather on the outside of the camp’s perimeter wall (now concrete again), and the Banshee does an overflight just before the Kwaidan touches down. Everyone rushes to board the ship, on which no insignia is visible.]
Andrew: A Drac ship?
Adam: Long story. Come on!
[In the re-education camp, the Falcon garrison scrambles into its OmniMechs. At the Kwaidan, the ramp swings down to let Hawk’s Mauler emerge for battle.]
Adam: Hawk, draw those Clan ‘Mechs away from the Academy. We don’t want to endanger the cadets.
Hawk: I roger that, Major. But first Santy Claus is going to drop off some presents for all the good little girls and boys.
Kristen: Enemy ‘Mech approaching. Destroy it at once.
[Sakamoto strafes the OmniMech Star. Hawk presses a button to release the cargo net and drop the crate to the ground.]
Hawk: Ha ha ha! All right, kiddies, it’s time to take the playground back from the bullies.
[Cadets run up and take laser rifles from the crate as Kristen’s OmniMech Star approaches.]
Kristen: All units, initiate enhanced imaging!
[The Clanners first volley of missiles knocks down a section of perimeter wall.]
Hawk: Thanks, guys. You just saved me the trouble of doing it myself.
Adam: Let’s go, Strikers. The night is still young, and our welcome home part has just started.
[Adam, Andrew, and Rachel stand in front of the Axman.]
Adam (to Andrew): It’s all yours. Just don’t bring it back with any dents.
Andrew: I won’t be much good to you out there. I’ve been out of the saddle for over six months.
Adam: You taught me everything I know about ‘Mech piloting, Andew. There’s no one I’d rather have fighting at my side.
Andrew (to Adam): I ever tell you how proud I am of you?
Adam: No, but I try not to take it personally.
[The Awesome cockpit appears to have at least doubled in size since last seen, and Rachel now sits in the upper/rear seat, whereas before she sat in the lower/front seat.]
[On the Academy grounds, cadets scatter Clan guards by throwing grenades. Near the Kwaidan, Hawk’s Mauler falls back before the Clan Star.]
Kristen: This one is mine!
[Kristen’s Mad Dog bombards Hawk’s Mauler with enough LRMs to make it collapse on the field. Hawk frantically tries to restore power.]
Hawk: C’mon, baby. Don’t freeze up on me now.
Kristen: Prepared to be destroyed, Striker!
[Lasers strike from a new direction as the rest of the Strikers enter the fray.]
Adam: Sorry, Kristen, but we’ve got other plans.
Kristen: Enough with this pitiful excuse for a MechWarrior. I want Adam Steiner.
[The Clan Star turns and marches away from Hawk to engage Adam.]
Hawk: Lady, you just made a big mistake.
Andrew: This targeting system is remarkable. How did our research people come up with this thing?
Adam: Actually, we stole it from the guys you’re shooting at.
Rachel: Andrew, you’ve got a Clan ‘Mech targeting you. Aim for its heat sinks. They’re below his left arm.
Andrew: Listen, Raych, I don’t know how you work things with my kid brother, but this Steiner calls his own shots.
[Andrew’s Axman staggers as a Hunchback IIC strikes from the rear. Adam knocks it out before Andrew is destroyed, however.]
Adam: Like I always say…
Andrew: If you say “information is ammunition” one more time, I’m gonna swing this axe in a very uncomfortable place.
[Andrew makes the Axman swing its hatchet suggestively.]
Andrew: Oh, and, by the way, thanks.
[Kylie, in her Infiltrator armor, leads a squad of cadets through the flaming wreckage of a building. She collapses the communications tower, then blasts through the wall of the command center.]
Kylie: Simon says, hands in the air!
[The Clanners surrender. Kylie walks forward to the command console and looks it over.]
Kylie: Anybody know which one shuts off the searchlight?
[She settles for blasting the whole console.]
Kylie: Better safe than sorry.
[The re-education hologram activates.]
Hologram: Brethren of the Inner Sphere, as you know, your decadent rulers abandoned you long before the Clans arrived.
[The cadets blast the projector with their rifles, then cheer.]
[Hawk duels a Timber Wolf one on one.]
Hawk: Enough of this, I’m getting sick.
[Hawk unleashes an Alpha Strike, knocking the OmniMech down.]
[Val battles another Timber Wolf on the perimeter of the prison, shooting it in the leg and crippling the limb.]
Val: Yo! Smart guy! Your shoelace is untied!
[The damaged OmniMech topples over.]
[Kristen Redmond accelerates towards the Axman in her Mad Dog.]
Kristen: I will not rest until you and your Strikers are defeated, Adam Steiner.
Andrew: Sorry, lady, but you got the wrong Steiner.
[Adam joins in against Kristen, rocking the OmniMech on its heels.]
Andrew: Ease up, Adam! This is my fight!
Adam: If it’s all the same to you, I’d like to take this one out. We go back a ways.
Andrew: She goes back further with me.
Rachel: Hold it, guys. Adam, adjust your targeting vector twelve degrees to the left. Andrew, adjust yours seventy degrees to the right. You’ll fry her heat sinks together.
Andrew: Good strategy. I can see why you work with her.
[The combined barrage knocks out Kristen’s heat sinks.]
Computer: Warning! Heat sinks at saturation!
[Kristen ejects from her Mad Dog.]
Adam: This remind you of anything?
[Later, the Jade Falcon flag is lowered from the camp flagpole, and a Federated Commonwealth banner rises in its place. The Strikers’ ‘Mechs parade through the middle of the academy, while Kristen Redmond, Pytor, and Gunther watch through the barred windows of their cells.]
Adam: Attention Somerset Academy! You are now officially liberated from the Jade Falcon Clan! And this is just the beginning! Tomorrow, we win back the entire planet!
[A new transmission breaks in, from Nicolai Malthus.]
Nicolai: Enjoy your victory, Adam Steiner. It will not last!
[Malthus and a Star of supporting ‘Mechs drop through the atmosphere in DropPods, which split open to allow the ‘Mechs to land.]
Nicolai: This time, Adam Steiner, I am not interested in taking bondsmen, planets, or the spoils of war. I am solely dedicated to destroying you and your lowly little Strikers.