|Time period:||3062 - Present|
|Capital world:||New Earth|
Born of the survivors of Clan Smoke Jaguar, the Fidelis were a secretive group of elite soldiers who fought for Devlin Stone during the Word of Blake Jihad and afterwards for the Republic of the Sphere. Following their participation and victory in the ilClan Trial, some members would rejoin Clan society by re-forming Clan Smoke Jaguar after the end of the Dark Age Era.
The Fidelis were a warrior society where every member was extensively cross-trained in different modes of combat, from piloting BattleMechs to standard infantry duty, as well as combat engineers with technical skills to customise their equipment and bypass security devices.
The Fidelis kept their history to themselves. This was more than tradition to them; it was their law and their creed. The little that was known indicates that they were created during the Jihad and were referred to at the time as Stone's Shadows, having pledged themselves to Devlin Stone until their unspecified debt could be repaid.
The Jihad Era
In November 3076 forces from Devlin Stone's allied coalition on Yorii discovered two Blakist reeducation camps from which previously interred Clan Smoke Jaguar warriors had already freed themselves from their captors. The Clansmen were presumed to have originally been prisoners captured by the Draconis Combine during either the battle for Huntress or Operation Bulldog. Evidence suggested that the Word had purposefully abandoned the Jaguars in the hope that Stone would destroy them. The Jaguar warriors had armed themselves with a mixture of Word of Blake 'Mechs and there was a short bout of fighting between them and Coalition forces who mistook them for Blakist defenders before Stone somehow brought it to an end.
|“||But to think these Clanners had been imprisoned for almost twenty years and still held to their codes? I have to admit, I'm impressed.||”|
|— Cpt. Musette Brady, 20 June 3077|
Dark Age Era
Even after their evolution into the Fidelis, all were bound by this oath, with their lives forfeit if necessary to fulfil their (unspecified) destiny. Those few in the Republic that knew about them felt that Stone had struck a dangerous bargain with them.
Only a little was known about them, prior to their joining with Stone, although it seems that they were betrayed by an unspecified individual at some point which caused them to turn to Stone for mutual aid. Unbeknownst to most, Stone and Prince Victor were secretly invited to Wayside V to meet what would be the core of the Fidelis by Paul Moon in August 3077 after their colony had repelled a Blakist incursion. Paul, as acting Custos, bargained his people's fighting strength in exchange for moving the colony into the Inner Sphere.
|“||The Great Betrayal was a pivotal moment for our people. We had been betrayed and left for dead by those who were our blood. They forgot us, but we refused to die. The Custos ensured our survival. He led us down the road to our home.||”|
|— From Surrender Your Dreams|
|“||The betrayers came and claimed to be our friends. The Custos knew better. He trusted them only as much as necessary. When we learned of their betrayal, he changed us forever. He taught us that freedom, with rules and guidelines, was the key to our survival. We shed the old ways that held us back. We found The Republic and tied our future to the Great Father - Stone.||”|
|— From Surrender Your Dreams|
Fulfilling their Pledge
The Fidelis were based on land gifted to them on New Earth after the Jihad, where they remained a potent military force, but weren't deployed until the crisis that started with the fall of the HPG network and the instigation of the Fortress Republic protocol. The Fidelis supplied Andrew Redburn with Battle Group Venator under the leadership of Group Commander Adamans for special operations outside the fortress.
First unveiled in action around 3135, their forces were in the thick of every major action that the Republic Remnant engaged in, proving crucial to success time and time again. The Fidelis were praised not only for their military prowess but also for the proficiency and aptitude of the technical staff they provided to assist the efforts of the Republic Remnant; those techs were being credited with not only being capable of repair equipment seemingly regardless of the level of damage but to incorporate improvements to the equipment in the process.
Under Redburn orders, the Fidelis became one of the key units of the Republic Remnant, based on planet Callison, their capital. They fought against the Clan Wolf invasion of the Remnant in 3149, losing their sole WarShip, the Flatus, in the defense of planet Dubhe. However, the same year, after The Wall of the Fortress was raised, and Stone sent forces to Callison to reunite Remnant and Fortress, Redburn chose to resist them. Initially, the Fidelis stood with Redburn, but after the fight broke out, they changed sides and concentrated their fire on Redburn's Black Knight 'Mech, downing it and forcing the Remnant forces to surrender.
As a reward for the Fidelis-turned-Wolves defeating the Jade Falcons on Terra, Alaric would keep his word and re-form the Smoke Jaguars on Terra, with Paul Moon attending. Knowing Alaric's favoring of symbolism, he wanted to do this to invalidate the Second Star League's destruction of them as a Clan a century ago. As with Clan tradition, the Smoke Jaguars would fill positions for the titles of Khan, saKhan and Loremaster. The Clan was composed of Fidelis Warriors that chose to rejoin the Clan way, but some would instead choose to stay with their old organization.
Political and Social Structure
The culture of the Fidelis was loosely based on that of Clan Smoke Jaguar. However, unlike their progenitors, they eschewed the caste system as they believed it was too restrictive on their society's belief in freedom. They held the last copy of the Jaguar Remembrance, which they referred to as The Unopened Work, the only known copy to survive the Road of Pain. This took on a mystical significance for them and became the center of many of their ceremonies. The Fidelis displayed an extreme animosity towards Clan Jade Falcon and Clan Wolf. This animosity was the subject of some speculation amongst their allies, with one theory being that the Fidelis were in some way related to Clan Wolverine. They were also very thorough in removing any potential leads to their origins. Depending on the state of their remains after death, any Fidelis who fell in combat were either flash-cremated on the spot or had an implant called the "Blessed Release" activated in their left shoulder to chemically destroy their DNA.
The Fidelis military consisted of a Century, which was one hundred of their very best warriors plus their augmenting trainees. They always had a century ready for service to the Republic. The Century consisted of two Battle Groups, with each Battle Group composed of three Umbras. An Umbra was described as being similar to a company of 'Mech forces with combined arms units attached.
Fidelis troopers followed orders unquestioningly and executed their assignments with an alacrity and competency that shamed other so-called professionals. Each soldier is trained first as technicians to enhance their equipment effectiveness before moving onto infantry duties (unarmored and then armored). Last, they would learn to use Combat Vehicles and finally BattleMechs before earning their place in a Century. Each soldier also customized their own equipment from BattleMech configuration down to their personal sidearms.
The Fidelis controlled a single WarShip, the Flatus, a Dante-class frigate formerly known as the CSV Bordeaux which was disabled - and believed destroyed - at Luyten 68-28 during the Jihad and subsequently salvaged by the Republic.
A Battlegroup was commanded by a Group Commander. Armored vehicles crews were known as Jagers and were led by Lead Jagers while infantry were Superstities.
The Custos was the Fidelis' leader, described as the leader and more: the Custos was also the past and future of their people.
Fidelis units have the following abilities:
- Overrun Combat
- Communications Disruption
- Zone of Control
Fidelis Technical Teams count as Clan and can reduce the modifiers imposed on a task by 2, to a minimum of 0.
Fidelis characters may use Clan Phenotypes and Clan Affiliation Modules for character creation under the A Time of War rules and automatically receive a -5 TP Dark Secret Trait reflecting their origins as descendants of Clan Smoke Jaguar.
- Jihad Hot Spots: Terra, p. 23
- Jihad: Final Reckoning, p. 56
- Total Chaos, p. 161
- Surrender Your Dreams, p. 171
- Era Report: 3145, pp. 12–17
- Era Report: 3145, p. 42: "Fidelis"
- Shattered Fortress, p. 70
- Shattered Fortress, p. 71
- Divided We Fall, p. 11
- Surrender Your Dreams, p. 291
- In this official BattleChat Line Developer Herbert A. Beas indicated that the last chapter of Surrender Your Dreams might be rendered noncanonical due to changes in franchise's plans for the timeline. To wit, no such change was implemented to date and the chapter in question remains fully canonical for the time being.
- Hour of the Wolf, p. 582
- Children of Kerensky, ch. 13
- Surrender Your Dreams, p. 234
- Surrender Your Dreams, pp. 174–175
- Field Manual: 3145, p. 139
- Surrender Your Dreams, Finis 1, Finis 2
- Era Report: 3145, p. 163: "Fidelis"