|Also known as||"The Bloodthirsty Giant"|
|Died||9 April 2459 |
The grandson of Peter Marik, Geralk was noted for his military ambition and his lack of interest in politics. During his tenure, he only spent twenty percent of his time on Atreus. He spent most of his energy on his ambitions of conquest.
Bella I and Alula Australis Campaign
His conquest of Bella I became infamous because of his tactics, which skirted the spirit—if not the letter—of the Ares Conventions, including continuous artillery barrages and orbital and aerospace strikes to soften Lyran defensive positions. Geralk would then send in his massed armored units to wipe out any Lyran forces in their path, issuing directives to view anyone on the planet as an enemy, and, therefore, to be shot on sight.
After his six month offensive on Bella, Geralk moved to Alula Australis. His forces used the same methods from Bella I, inflicting incredibly high casualties on the Lyran defenders. By the end of this offensive Geralk had gained his nickname from the Lyran people, "The Bloodthirsty Giant", as a result of his uncommonly brutal methods for the post-Ares age.
Loric Campaign and Geralk's downfall
Pleased with his swift victories over the Lyran defenders, Geralk decided to press on to Loric. Free Worlds League forces established beachheads on the planet, but the swift progress of his previous conquests eluded him as the Lyran defenders conducted a flexible defense over the planet's surface. These actions allowed the defenders to draw out the campaign for three years.
By 2459, the frustrated Captain-General formulated a new strategy by mounting an attack on Lyran forces on Loric's Antipodes continent. His intent was to begin with a massive artillery bombardment, then thrust his highly-motivated troops into battle. At dawn on April 9th, however, the Lyrans struck first with a revolutionary weapon. Unknown to the Captain-General, the Lyran Commonwealth had stolen designs for the first BattleMechs from the Terran Hegemony's factory on Hesperus II. At first dismissing the Lyran penetrations of his line as mere infiltrators, Geralk caught sight of the BattleMechs in the distance before being contacted directly by his opponent, General Marcus Andrews. Andrews offered Marik a chance to surrender (the same courtesy that the Captain-General had previously denied his Lyran enemies), but this was contemptuously rejected by Marik. Seeing shortly after the bipedal war machines tearing through his defenses, Geralk ordered a retreat before mounting his tank and acting as rear guard for his fleeing soldiers.
The battle which followed was a one-sided slaughter. Marik ordered an artillery bombardment of anti-personnel shells against the giant 'Mechs. He almost thought he had succeeded in stopping them, but a stiff wind revealed that the shelling had not done any damage to the 'Mechs. In rising panic, Geralk ordered his armored forces forward. He also ordered his forces to use high-explosive shells in both the tanks and artillery cannons. Lyran-built Mackie's returned fire with particle cannons, autocannons, and other 'Mech-grade weaponry. Within fifteen minutes the battle had turned against Geralk, with a regiment worth of his tanks laying in ruins. They had taken only one 'Mech down in the exchange. As the League troops were routed Geralk himself refused to surrender and was unceremoniously crushed under the heel of a Lyran BattleMech.
Family and Legacy
All of his children would become Captain-General, starting with his daughter Simone, who was appointed to the post after his death on Loric.
Geralk is also noted for being one of the most remembered Captains-General of the League's long history. He was also the first Captain-General to die in battle.
Geralk's death differs slightly between the sourcebook House Steiner (The Lyran Commonwealth) and the short story A Dish Served Cold. In the sourcebook Geralk receives a demand for his surrender only after being defeated by the BattleMechs, whereas in the short story he is contacted before the Lyran 'Mechs reach his camp.
- House Steiner (The Lyran Commonwealth), p. 19 "The Bloodthirsty General"
- Handbook: House Marik, p. 84, "Captains-General in History"
- A Dish Served Cold, p. 1 (PDF version)
- House Marik (The Free Worlds League), p. 16, "Tenure of Geralk Marik"
- House Steiner (The Lyran Commonwealth), pp. 20-21 - "Operation Prometheus" & "The Bloodthirsty General"
- House Steiner (The Lyran Commonwealth), p. 21, "The Bloodthirsty General"
- A Dish Served Cold, p. 1-8 (PDF version)
- House Marik (The Free Worlds League), p. 17, "The Free Worlds and Terra"