Clan Hell's Horses
[Hell's Horses Logo]

Background

From the fires of Eden came John Fletcher,
A true warrior, leader of men, not machines.
His wisdom became that of a new Clan
That challenged even the mightiest of 'Mechs.

          The Hell's Horses are unique in the Clans in that they make extensive use of armor in their frontline Clusters. A true-combined arm oriented Clan, the Hell's Horses have fewer mechs than most other Clans, but are amongst the foremost leaders in Elemental Bloodlines and technology.

          Formed by Khans John Fletcher and Patricia Cobb, the Hell's Horses have always placed the warrior first. Khan Fletcher reached an arrangement with ilKhan Nicholas Kerensky that allowed the Horses to field more Clusters at the expense of 'mech assets. This allowed Khan Fletcher to add substantial armor and infantry elements to his Clusters. Though many within the Clans predicted an early doom for the Hell's Horses, the Pentagon campaign proved how effective Khans Fletcher and Cobbs' tactics were.

          The battle for Eden proved a tough proving ground for the Horses. Their target cities, though inhabited by separate sects, heavily outnumbered the Horses. After losing several scout mechs in ambushes, Khan Fletcher drew upon his vast guerrilla warfare experience to crush the opposing forces. It was soon discovered that the enemy was concentrating their efforts on destroying 'mechs and ignoring armor and infantry units. Khan Fletcher then devised a plan, which used his 'mechs as decoys for his armor and infantry units. After two weeks of this guerrilla campaign, the Horses launched a full-scale attack against the three cities and quickly overran their depleted forces.

          The Horses success on Eden laid rest to many claims about their weakness. The losses suffered were minimal compared to other Clans and were more readily replaced. Moreover, the campaign taught the Horses the viability of their combined arms philosophy and set them on the path that would field them a powerful infantry contingent.

          During the Golden Century, after Nicholas Kerensky's death during the WidowMaker Trial of Absorption, the Hell's Horses remained relatively silent. They established a number of successful colonies and established trade agreements with Clan Sea Fox (later Clan Diamond Shark). Aside from a few Trials of Possession over needed resources, the Horses seldom left their enclaves.

          In 2868, Clan Wolf first deployed its new Elemental armor suit in a Trial versus the Nova Cats. The Horses, who had long been striving to build the ultimate infantry force, immediately saw the advantages of the new personal battle armor. Khan Eric Amirault immediately declared a Trial of Possession against Clan Wolf for the Elemental armor. However, Wolf Khan Alexis Ward made a counter offer that would be beneficial to both Clans. Khan Ward offered a batch of the battle armor in exchange for samples of Hell's Horses genetic legacies and breeding protocols. The two Clans would then fight three separate Trials, with the winning Clan gaining one-third of the offered isorla. In the end, Clan Wolf won two of the three Trials and much of the Horses genetic legacies. The Horses, however, did not despair over the loss of the isorla. The Horses won one-third of the offered battlesuits and within a generation fielded the awesome Elementals in large numbers.

          Two years later, the Horses suffered a terrible defeat when forces from Kindraa Smythe-Jewel and Payne of Clan Fire Mandrill, intent on gaining two Horse genetic legacies, attacked the Horse's capital on Eden. Khan Amirault committed only his Alpha Galaxy to the defense, having decided to meet the two Kindraa with equal forces. All information available indicated that the battle would be evenly matched.

          The Horses met Kindraa Payne's force in a vicious battle that the Horses eventually won. Unknown to Kindraa Payne and Khan Amirault, Colonel Smythe of Kindraa Smythe-Jewel deliberately misstated the forces he was attacking with. As a result, the elite Fire Mandrill Clusters ripped apart the light Eleventh Mechanized Cavalry Cluster. The Kindraa Smythe-Jewel retreated to their homeworld, leaving behind shattered Kindaa Payne and Hell's Horses forces swearing vengeance.

          The Hell's Horses did not have long to wait for their revenge on Kindraa Smythe-Jewel. Just as Khan Amirault was preparing to launch an assault against the Kindraa, Coyote Khan Manfried Hollifield suggested a compromise that would benefit both Clans. The Coyotes had also been stung by the Kindraa Smythe-Jewel's deceptions and were just as eager to attack the Kindraa. Khan Hollifield suggested a joint assault contract which would allow both Clans to attack the Kindraa. The objective was to completely annihilate the Kindraa and seize their genetic legacies.

          The 666th Mechanized Assault Cluster and 11th Mechanized Cavalry Cluster combined with nearly a full Coyote Cluster launched a massive assault onto Foster, the Kindraa Smythe-Jewel homeworld. The Kindraa put up significant aerial resistance, but the combined aerowings of the assault force repelled and destroyed the Kindraa fighters. Then, the Coyote and Hell's Horses forces utterly destroyed the Kindraa Smythe-Jewel Clusters in a running battle which lasted two days. The Horse's force, particularly the 666th Mechanized Assault Cluster, took heavy losses but achieved all their objectives.

          The battle over, the two Clans split their isorla. The Horses claimed half of the Smythe-Jewel genetic legacies and all of the salvageable 'mechs. The Coyotes received the Kindraa's holdings on Foster plus all of the surviving Kindraa warriors. The defeat of the Kindraa Smythe-Jewel greatly enriched the Horse's as many of the salvaged mechs were newly built OmniMechs. This added technology gave the Horses a much needed insight into the workings of Omni technology.

          In the years to follow, the Horses moved their capital to the world Niles. They built a massive new OmniMech factory on Tokasha which helped bring their touman up to par with the other Clans. The vast difference in the ratio of mechs to armor and infantry assets began to slowly change as the Horse's built more and more new OmniMechs. This, along with a increase in popularity amongst MechWarriors in the Clan, indicated a fundamental change in the Clans fighting philosophy. Though they still strongly believed in combined arms tactics, the Horses began to integrate larger numbers of 'mechs into their ranks.

          For many years, the Clans fortunes rose steadily. Then, the Ghost Bears declared a Trial of Possession for the Tokasha mech factory. The Horse Khans had no intention of losing their greatest military asset and committed the entirety of Beta Galaxy to its defense. The Ghost Bear Khan, Killbourne Jorgensson, was surprised at the size of the Horses bid but matched it with an equal number of troops.

          The battle for Tokasha was one of the most devastating the Horses had ever fought. The battle went well at first as Horse infantry units isolated and destroyed individual mechs. The Horses armor also exacted a high toll against the Bear forces. The Ghost Bear Elementals, suddenly deprived of their usual 'mech support, were systematically overrun and destroyed by Horse infantry. Victory seemed assured for Clan Hell's Horses. Then, Ghost Bear Khan Jorgensson was killed while trying to rally his troops. The Ghost Bear warriors, shocked at the death of their Khan, went into a berserker frenzy and quickly turned the tide of battle against the Horse forces. The enraged Bears hammered at the Horse forces incessantly, until Khan Cobb, sensing the battle was lost, ordered a full retreat. The Ghost Bears won the Trial and the Tokasha MechWorks facility. This battle also set the stage for a long-running feud between the two Clans.

          Over the next century, the Horses and Bears engage in numerous Trials. The battles slowly ate away at what little omnimech reserves the Horses possessed. Finally, the Horses established a new 'mech facility on Niles, but production barely kept pace with losses over the years.

          The feud between the Bears and Horses reached a climax in the 3040's when the Ghost Bears initiated a Trial of Possession for the Niles Industriplex. The Horses could not afford to lose another 'mech facility. They defended it with the entire Alpha Galaxy. This time, despite tremendous losses and the death of Khan Lair Seidman, the Horses emerged victorious over the Bears. The death of Khan Seidman left a seriously injured saKhan Malavai Fletcher as senior Khan.

Recent Events

          The invasion of the Inner Sphere left the Horses out of contention for a spot in the attacking force. Though disgruntled at the missed opportunity, Khan Malavai Fletcher chose to wait and rebuild his forces rather than waste energy and equipment on futile attacks, such as the Ice Hellions did.

          The defeat of the Clans on Tukayyid proved a boon for the Horses. Khan Fletcher, working with Khan Asa Taney of the Ice Hellions, worked to push for a renewal of the Invasion. The Refusal War between the Jade Falcons and Wolves provided an even greater incentive, as the two mightiest Clans reduced each other to a fraction of their former strength. The Horses and Ice Hellions, along with the Diamond Sharks, moved to absorb the Wolves and Falcons but failed to gather the votes necessary in the Grand Council. Frustrated at being deprived of another chance at joining the invasion force, fate provided another means of Hell's Horses glory when Wolf Khan Ward initiated what quickly became to be called the Harvest Trials. These Trials would allow individual Stars, Binaries and Trinary's to battle invading Clan forces for the right to join an invading Clan. These set piece battles, mostly formal battles where the outcome was known in advance but with a few heavily fought battles, allow many warriors from the Home Clan forces to join the Jade Falcons and Wolves as warriors.

          The recent Harvest Trials caused a great deal of concern for many Clans. Khan Fletcher, however, came up with a far more reasonable solution. Rather than lose individual Stars to the Wolves or Falcons, Khan Fletcher negotiated a contract with Khan Vladimir Ward of Clan Wolf. The contract gave the Wolves command of the elite 11th Mechanized Cavalry Cluster, but the Cluster would retain its ties to Clan Hell's Horses. The arrangement would give the Wolves an elite Cluster without having to risk any of its own assets in a Trial of Possession and the Horses would gain valuable combat experience against the Inner Sphere military's.


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