|Also known as||Melisandra DuBonnet, "Lainie"|
|Parents||Seizo DuBonnet (father)|
- 1 Character Description
- 2 Notes
- 3 References
- 4 Bibliography
Tai-sa Eleanor "Lainie" Shimazu was the former commander of the 9th Ghost Regiment and a dedicated supporter of Theodore Kurita after he freed her from the control of corrupted yakuza elements. Physically, she was known for her red hair, tall stature, and cool demeanor as a warrior.
Early Life & Servitude on Hachiman
In her youth she lived on Kagoshima, where she was a tomboy and enjoyed participating in sporting events. Her father was wealthy, and when she was aged twelve he used his connections to get her into excellent schools. However her tomboyish and rebellious mentality soon got her kicked out, deeply upsetting her father. As she matured into a young woman, one of her father's yakuza lieutenants betrayed him to other power-hungry yakuza, which forced her to flee to Hachiman. There she came under the influence of her "cousin", Kazuo Sumiyama, a powerful yakuza boss. She was forced to submit to his will, only gaining freedom when Theodore Kurita implemented reforms in the DCMS and began to recruit yakuza members. The new mandates allowed for yakuza members in the armed forces to answer only to the Coordinator, dissolving their former allegiances.
The 17th Recon and the Coming Storm
In August 3056, Lainie and the command staff of the Ninth Ghost witnessed the arrival of the 17th Recon Regiment (aka Camacho's Caballeros) to garrison Uncle Chandy's Hachiman Taro Electronics (HTE) compound. She and her people began to scope out the gaijin mercenaries to determine their strengths and weaknesses. Eventually, the DCMS troops and the Caballeros met in a bar which the mercenaries had adopted and a friendly brawl ensued. Lainie warmed up to Bronco Company's commander, Captain Kali MacDougall, with whom she felt kinship, having both faced the Clans and surviving in a "man's world."
In early September, she met with her cousin and former yakuza master, Kazuo Sumiyama. He asked for her opinion of these new arrivals and their abilities. She treated him with impertinence, despising him for his years of control over her before she had been freed by Theodore's reforms.
Lainie and rest of the Ninth Ghost became fast friends with the 17th Recon, observing their unbelievable piloting skills during 'Mech exercises for Uncle Chandy. In early October, HTE was attacked by Word of Blake raiders. Lainie ordered the deployment of the Ninth, but was stopped by Earl of Hachiman, Percival Fillington. He ordered that no BattleMechs were to deploy from her base. Lainie obeyed the order, but organized her troops to take vehicles with infantry gear to support her mercenary friends.
On November 1st, she was ordered by Planetary Governor Fillington to attack the HTE compound, due to an apparent mutiny by her friends in the 17th Recon Regiment. She was also called to Kazuo, persuaded with force by his goons to meet him. At her cousin's headquarters, Kazuo told her that he was disappointed in her actions and feelings towards mercenaries. This shamed him and his organization, and Lainie was forced to atone for her behavior to her cousin by cutting her left finger off in the yakuza ritual of yubitsume.
Siege of HTE Compound
On November 2nd, the Day of the Dead holiday, Lainie assembled her regiment at the outskirts of the compound, demanding the surrender of the 17th Recon and the release of their "captive". Colonel Don Camacho politely refused, citing her hesitation in addressing the poor treatment of his company by DCMS forces, and responded that he was still being paid to protect Lord Chandrasekhar Kurita and his compound from attack.
She split her force by battalion, leading First Battalion in a frontal assault against HTE Compound's front in the north. She dispatched her Second Battalion to the south in a flanking attack. In hope to distract her former friends, she sent commandos with SRM missiles to hit the compound walls in various locations to confuse the defenders. She held her Third Battalion in reserve, waiting for the planet's two moons to lower the tide of the deep Yamato River so they could conduct their surprise assault across the unprotected flank of the fortress. However, Lainie and the First Battalion were caught in a trap set by her mercenary foes. She was forced to commit her Third Battalion early, but good timing with the low tides allowed her people to cross the river to attack the Compound from the west.
The battle began to turn for the Ghosts as Shimazu marched her battalion with the Second to the front wall as they weathered barrages of artillery fire. Battering the mercenaries into a withdrawal, she and her people stormed the Compound's northern walls.
As they pressed the fight into the Compound, Lainie was moved to tears as a singing Caballero Astech played a tearful ballad of a forbidden tune. She recognized the song as a tale of a lost daughter and heroine, which was also her beloved Ninth Ghost's own, and she felt in her spirit that she could not bear to defeat her former friends.
Lainie's Third Battalion was repulsed by the last-ditch efforts of the defenders, including the 17th Recon's commanding officer in his Timber Wolf. With a counterassault forming behind the 2nd Battalion, they too withdrew from the fight.
As she piloted her Mauler to what she believed was her doom, Lainie encountered her old friend Kali MacDougall and her equally battered Atlas. Lainie apologized, but told Kali she must proceed, even if it had to be through her. Fortunately she was saved from fighting her friend when ISF Assistant Director Ninyu Kerai-Indrahar interrupted, announcing on all general frequencies that the combat was over.
Aftermath and Ascension
After the battle, she and the Ghosts were seen as heroes. A false story was created covering up the true events of the battle, with the new story portraying her and 17th Recon as heroes fighting an undisclosed foe. She found herself promoted within the yakuza gang to her "cousin's" former position as its leader. After her cousin's sudden "suicide" flying his private aircraft into the side of a cliff, she reorganized the Sumiyama organization, with other yakuza gang leaders now answering to her. She reflected on events leading to new position with laughter. Lainie admired her newly reattached finger, while her boot rested next to canister containing the head of Kazuo.
Reunion and Romance
In June of 3058, Lainie and the rest of the 9th Ghost would be invited as guests to Coordinator Theodore Kurita's birthday celebration. Lainie's unit would be housed in the studios of the Eiga-toshi (also known as Cinema City). At the studio of the Voice of the Dragon, they had a reunion with her friends from the 17th Recon, who had also been invited to Luthien.
Shortly after her friends' arrival she would celebrate with many of Luthien's leading officers and political heads. At a party, she encountered the Voice of the Dragon director, Mishcha Kurosawa, who would prevent a foolish Sho-sho from attempting to manhandle Cassie Suthorn. His conduct caught her attention and she struck up a conversation, leading to the pair becoming involved in a quiet relationship. Her romance with Mishcha would lighten up her life as the couple enjoyed their talks and intimate time together.
However, on the 27th, a pale Lainie called Mishcha suddenly and told him she wanted to break off the relationship. She explained that she didn't see them having much of a future, despite his protests and feelings. Lainie finished by telling Mishcha to get over it and move on. Later that day, after fighting a grueling simulation against Smoke Jaguar forces, Lainie ran into her old friend Kali MacDougall. Kali convinced her to take a walk and talk about what was troubling her, citing concern for her old friend. Lainie conceded to Kali that she felt Mishcha was too good for her, since he treated her in a way no man ever had. However, she was on a mission that she swore Kali by her honor not to reveal to anyone. She told Kali the identity of the man who killed her father and drove her into exile: Benjamin Inagawa, Chief Oyabun of the Benjamin Military District. He was now on Luthien and she was honor bound to kill him. Because he had become an honored servant of the Coordinator, she planned to commit seppuku to avoid disgracing the Coordinator with her actions. Kali understood and tried to reason with her that there must be another way, but admitted to Lainie she couldn't think of an alternative.
Rescue of the Coordinator and Revenge
During the parade on July 1st, Cassie Suthorn contacted Lainie warning her that traitors were attempting to assassinate the Coordinator. She ordered a company of her regiment to detach from its place in line, charging through the city to reach the Imperial Palace. At the palace, a special company of OmniMechs led by Otomo commander Tai-sa Hideyoshi declared Theodore Kurita a traitor and turned its guns on him.
Lainie's Ninth Ghost troops began arriving in Unity Square as the Otomo turned on the Coordinator. As her forces joined the fight, one of her 'Mechs, a Stealth, was blown into pieces in mid-flight as it began the assault on the traitors. As her unit engaged the traitors of the Otomo, the 1st Sword of Light fired on the Ghosts, assuming they were hostile. Lainie announced on general frequencies that the Coordinator was being assaulted by the Otomo demonstration team, telling the First to cease fire. She then turned on the traitor Oda Hideyoshi, taking on his Sunder with her Mauler. Getting up close and personal with Hideyoshi's machine, she managed to fire her 'Mech's Large Laser into his cockpit.
While she fought her duel with Hideyoshi, her 'Mech and command withered away from the Otomo onslaught. With her 'Mech sustaining major damage - including the loss of most of her weapon systems - Lainie took inspiration from Kali MacDougall's style of fighting. She charged her Mauler up to Hideyoshi's Sunder and managed to trip his 'Mech. She was then hailed by Tai-sho Tomoe Sakade, Commander of Kagoshima Prefecture and wife of the Coordinator. Lainie identified herself when challenged and charged Hideyoshi as traitor, asking Sakade to investigate. Tai-sho Sakade agreed, but allowed Hideyoshi to stand his 'Mech up after Lainie had knocked him down. When he did, he announced "Death to the Traitors!" and attempted to charge the grandstand where the Coordinator was guarded. Tai-sho Sakade fired on his 'Mech, joined in by Lainie and all loyal 'Mechs present in the square, annihilating him.
Meanwhile, Chief Oyabun Benjamin Inagawa was among the crowd when Coordinator Kurita emerged from within his review stand's armored blast walls. Having mixed feelings about his coconspirators' failed assassination attempt on Theodore Kurita, he drew his holdout pistol and aimed at the Coordinator. However, Lainie spotted Inagawa among the crowd, and using her 'Mech's barrel arms like a pair of giant chop sticks, swept him up off the ground. She then announced her true identity as Melisandra DuBonnet, charging Inagawa with the murder of her father and that he would pay in blood for his crimes. He demanded to be set down, and Lainie gladly complied, lowering him gently. Inagawa began to run, but was immediately crushed under her 'Mech's right foot, avenging her late father. Shortly after Lainie would dismount her 'Mech and meet again with Mishcha, greeting him with a heartwarming hug, their relationship mended.
In the Aftermath of the Coup, Otomo, and the Jihad
Officially, Lainie's command was dissolved. She and her surviving members of the Legion were transferred to the Otomo's 'Mech Regiment.
Promoted to Chu-sa upon her transfer, she became the commanding officer of the Otomo's 3rd Battalion. In 3063, the Coordinator's wife Tomoe Sakade committed seppuku during the Combine-Ghost Bear War, and had her Naginata willed to Lainie for "all time" for her role in saving her husband from the Black Dragon assassins.
- Lainie's call sign among her regimental colleagues is "Red Witch", and for most of her command career in the Ninth Ghost, she piloted a Mauler assault 'Mech. She was a tall woman, with less modesty when it came to the taboo of being "underclothed" compared to most Combine women due to her position as a MechWarrior and a yakuza. She sported untamed, flaming red hair.
- It is unclear what happened to her during the early stages of the Jihad. The 2nd Sword of Light sided with the resurgent Black Dragons and turned the Imperial City and the world of Luthien into a civil war battlefield. The Loyalist Otomo suffered 75% losses to its officer core, and Lainie Shimazu was not listed among the current officers in its command.
- Black Dragon, p. 238: Lainie tells her close friend Kali her real name and that of her father
- Close Quarters, p. 162: early life as tomboy and sports enthusiast
- Close Quarters, pp. 162–164: Early Life, fleeing her homeworld, to Hachiman
- Close Quarters, pp. 122–131: Cassie and Kali start their friendship in unit's bar when Tai-su Shinini Shimazu and the Ninth Ghost walk into the bar and introduce themselves
- Close Quarters, pp. 133–138: Lainie is summoned to her cousin's headquarters trying exert control over her as used to prior to Coordinator Kurita's reforms
- Close Quarters, pp. 160–162: Lainie and her people witness the 17th Recon's expertise to show off their unusual piloting skills
- Close Quarters, pp. 231–232, 240–241: Lainie's actions during first attack against HTE's compound
- Close Quarters, pp. 304–307: Lainie is called to Sumiyama headquarters just before she called into combat
- Close Quarters, pp. 311–312: Lainie is forced to cut her finger off for helping the 17th Recon's people
- Close Quarters, pp. 318–319: Lainie is forced to ask for the 17th Recon's surrender, knowing full well she was being forced to fight them
- Close Quarters, pp. 322–325, 330–337, 342–345, 350–351, 363–364, 370–371, 375: Lainie's actions during the Siege of HTE Compound
- Close Quarters, pp. 382–384: Lainie's life goes into upswing since her elevation as hero
- Black Dragon, pp. 85–89: Lainie and 9th Ghost have reunion at Cinema City on Luthien
- Black Dragon, pp. 95–99, 128–136: Lainie meets and starts a relationship with VoTD Director Kurosawa and Cassie Suthorn finds out later she could be in love through her regiment members
- Black Dragon, pp. 137–141: Lainie's relationship with Mishcha would grows
- Black Dragon, pp. 222–223: Lainie calls it quits with Mishcha reluctantly
- Black Dragon, pp. 234–239: Lainie's confession of her problems to Kali, and her honor-bound but suicidal plans to kill Benjamin Inagawa
- Black Dragon, pp. 348–351, 353–358: Lainie runs to the rescue and engages the renegade Otomo OmniMech demo team
- Black Dragon, pp. 367–371: Pitched battle against Otomo and her joining with the Coordinator's wife to finish off their leader
- Black Dragon, pp. 371–377: Lainie gets revenge for father and is reunited with lover, Mishcha
- Field Manual: Updates, pp. 102, 110, 119: Otomo - 9th Ghost and its survivors integrated with Otomo regiment
- Technical Readout: 3055 Upgrade, p. 78: "Naginata/Notable MechWarriors" – Lainie Shimazu noted as Notable MechWarrior noting slight update her position in the Otomo and being gifted the Coordinator's wife Assault BattleMech
- Close Quarters, pp. 69, 318–319: 'Mech and call sign noted. Her hair is noted flame red and her face has freckles
- Field Report: DCMS, p. 12: Genyosha/Otomo/Izanagi - Field Report: shows significant loss of officers during the Battle for Luthien, character's survival is doubtful