Son of Blake
|Son of Blake|
|Author||Blaine Lee Pardoe|
|First published||7 August 2009|
|Era||Clan Invasion era|
Civil War era
|Timeline||2 March 3059-20 July 3066|
|Series||Son of Blake|
|Followed by||The Loyal Son|
The eponymous story that began what is known as the Son of Blake series, Son of Blake is a short story by Blaine Lee Pardoe that was published online on BattleCorps on 7 August 2009. It was also later published in print in the 2016 BattleCorps anthology Front Lines.
|“||From the fires of the Chaos March, came many stories. Some tragic, some miracles, and in the cause of Raul, it is a story of growth. A story of learning who to trust and what he can become.||”|
Young Raul Tinker has been living in a public shelter on New Home, ever since a BattleMech trampled the Tinker family's house (and his mother) during some fighting between Capellan Confederation and Federated Suns forces four years ago. Their father's factory was also smashed and left him unemployed despite his best efforts. Different flags have flown over the refugee camps over time, but no government or organization was able or willing to actually improve their lot, leaving Raul deeply disillusioned.
On 2 March 3059, seventeen-year-old Raul is informed by Word of Blake social worker Adept Weingard that his father was killed in an accident, leaving him orphaned with his three sisters. Since their father was killed while unloading a Word of Blake ship, the children — through Raul — are offered a place in a Word of Blake orphanage as a charity measure. They accept, as it will be vastly better than the shelter and give them a chance at proper education.
Three years later, living in a foster family and ignoring the jeers he sometimes suffers when wearing a Word school uniform, Raul seizes the chances the Word of Blake gave him and his sisters and easily passes his exams. Based on his grades he is offered a military career by Weingard, though Raul would have to join the Word of Blake proper for this.
By 1 May 3066 Raul is commissioned as a MechWarrior lieutenant with Aaron's Eradicators, one of several volunteer Word of Blake MechWarriors fighting in mercenary units to gain combat experience without revealing the Word's military army. The Eradicators crush House Davion-sponsored rebels on Bryant, where the crews from two enemy tanks and some surviving enemy infantry surrender. Enraged by the duplicity of the Davion backing and the unnecessary deaths it caused (and a fight with a Vindicator that reminded him of his mother's death), Raul argues with Captain Randy Aaron over whether they should even take prisoners; Raul's point is that returning them to local law enforcement or reintegrating them into the population would only serve to sow the seeds of more uprisings. Killing them now would pacify the planet and save lives in the long run. Aaron objects to what he outright calls murder, but acquiesces when Raul and the Word of Blake volunteer for handling the dirty work, leaving his hands clean.
In the aftermath, Raul feels guilty about his crime. Captain Aaron, upon reporting what happened, receives transfer orders for Raul and the other Word of Blake volunteers and a private message to Raul. The private message from Weingard turns out to be not an admonishment, but a promotion to Demi-Precentor for doing what had to be done. After some leave, Raul is going to be reassigned to Terra for extra training, his guilt replaced by jubilant confidence.
Meanwhile at the site of the massacre, MI5 agent Francis Lyman begins piecing together what happened, and that the Word of Blake was behind the massacre of the Davion personnel. He resolves to personally make the culprits pay.