Dance of Vengeance

Dance of Vengeance
Story information
Author William H. Keith, Jr.
Pages 6
Type Short story
Product Shrapnel
Illustrations Jeff Laubenstein
Era Succession Wars era
Timeline ca. 3028

Dance of Vengeance (consistently misspelled "Dance of Vengence") is a BattleTech short story by William H. Keith, Jr.. It was published in the 1988 anthology Shrapnel.

No exact dates are provided in the story but references to other events suggest the duel to take place shortly after the recovery of the Helm Memory Core in 3028; the destruction of Tyrell's Raiders occurred four years earlier, i.e. around 3024.

Plot summary[edit]

This story is told through flashbacks during a honor duel to the death between Chu-i Salvadore Tyrell and Sho-sa Victor Garreth during a reception on Kajikazawa:

Tyrell's Raiders were an independent mercenary unit of company size, originally raised as a militia force from Kajikazawa, under the command of Salvadore's father Raymond Tyrell. At some point (implied to be around 3024) the Raiders were attached to the Second Benjamin Regulars as auxiliary reserve troops, and deployed on the planet of New Wessex. Battalion commander Sho-sa Victor Garreth, openly disdainful of the unit, ordered Tyrell's Raiders to guard an important river crossing, the Ourus Crossing, against a Steiner force of ostensibly equal strength. However, the attacking force turned out to be not a company, but a heavy regiment in size, and crushed the defenders in short order, killing Salvadore's sister Theresa in her Shadow Hawk and forcing Salvadore himself to eject from his wrecked Centurion.

Upon returning to base on foot after three days in the wilderness, Salvadore Tyrell found that the survivors of his unit had been hanged for cowardice in the face of the enemy because they allegedly retreated from a fight with roughly equal numbers against explicit orders after having suffered only light damage. Their remaining BattleMechs had been confiscated by the Second Benjamin Regulars, who had already lifted off-planet. The destruction of Tyrell's Raiders had obviously been a plot by Victor Garreth to acquire their valuable 'Mechs for his own troops, sacrificing what he considered a worthless mercenary unit.

Dispossessed and with no options, Salvadore returned home to plot his revenge against the treacherous commander. Almost a year later he was contacted by Duke Hassid Ricol and hired to create a personal 'Mech company for the Red Duke. Salvadore named the unit "Tyrell's Terrors" after his late father's Dragon. The unit is deployed to garrison on Verthandi following an uprising there (implied to be the events from the novel Mercenary's Star).

After Ricol's return from a venture in the Free Worlds League (implied to be the events from the novel The Price of Glory, namely the recovery of the Helm Memory Core), the Red Duke informs Salvadore about a reception on Kajikazawa where he finally gets his chance to confront Garreth; Ricol feels that Victor Garreth is an arrogant liability to his nation and that Salvadore's vendetta is justified. Salvadore Tyrell is discharged from Ricol's service so that he can privately challenge Garreth and kill him without repercussions for Ricol.

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