Vector (short story)
|Vector (short story)|
|Product||BattleTech: 25 Years of Art & Fiction|
|Era||Clan Invasion era|
|Timeline||5-22 September 3059|
The short story Vector was published in BattleTech: 25 Years of Art & Fiction.
On Rockland, Evan Mathers, head of a unit of DCMS deserters called the 1st Edo Company, hunts and kills Smoke Jaguar remnants as revenge for the Turtle Bay Massacre. By 5 September 3059, his unit has a prisoner, a single pilot from a lone Dasher who resists any effort at interrogation. Evan, who drove the unit to desert, is tormented by memories of his deceased wife and takes out his frustrations on the prisoner with brutal violence.
At the same time, a rogue Smoke Jaguar scientific assistant is taught about genetics and wildlife by a mysterious Keeper of a Bloodname "Not-To-Be-Spoken", the man who gathered together a hidden group of rogue Jaguars.
A mysterious and highly lethal disease runs rampant through the 1st, one that defies Evan's initial belief that it is merely a flu. As the crisis grows and soldiers fall seriously ill, the unit's doctors conclude that their prisoner is the vector of infection, deliberately allowed to be taken prisoner - a bioweapon. Evan brings the prisoner into the unit's only 'Mech, his Gunslinger, activates his locator and distress signal on every band, and, with any Smoke Jaguar in range alerted, sets his 'Mech to self-destruct. Unit doctor Gwen Hudson, evading Evan's orders, calls the unit's former parent, the 11th Legion of Vega, for emergency support.
Sometime afterwards, the 11th picks up the remnants of the deserters, taking at least Gwen in for study and treatment. Their doctors determine that the 1st Edo Company was the victim of a bioweapon attack, a gene-targeted parasite designed to kill anyone outside of a particular genetic line. Gwen has survived, something the doctors speculate may involve a distant Clan-tied ancestor, but the Legion intends to keep her in custody.