The timeline in the Universe Guide mentions the overrunning of Exeth during the period 7A700 and 7A782. It’s mentioned in the gazetteer and in the Splintering timeline. After having uncovered some interesting archive records on the system, Tim expands on the impact this event had on the forces of the PanHuman Concord: the creation of the Exeth Division.
Six hundred years ago, and for less than 90 years, the system of Exeth was temporarily part of Concord (rather than Senatex) space. It’s capture led to a massive mobilisation to defend the vulnerable military base and its surrounding systems. This was one of the very few times when the Concord found it had a need to allocate and organise troops into divisional level structures, rather than its smaller (but highly effective) strike brigades, each division being from 5,000 to 10,000 units (panhumans and drones) strong.
These became known as the Exeth Divisions.
When Exeth was the subject of a major assault by the Senatex in the early 800’s, the Exeth Divisions were virtually wiped out when they elected to stand and fight rather than be overwhelmed by the hostile Isorian IMTel. One of the Exeth divisions tasked with defending the outlying stellar-orbital habitats accompanied the civilians as they fled the incoming Senatex.
A small armada was rapidly put together of refugee transports and half the troops of the Exeth Division divided amongst them, the light cruisers and the frigates that were to accompany the refugee on its voyage through the gate. The remaining troops in the division were assigned to the heavy cruisers as marines, the plan being for the heavy cruisers and a few frigates to smash through the Isorian blockading force at the gate and hold it for long enough for the armada to escape.
Almost all of the blockading force and much of the armada was destroyed by the overwhelming forces of the Senatex. Nonetheless, so much damage was inflicted on the Senatex navy that one heavy cruiser, half the transports, two light cruisers and a few frigates managed to escape to the recently established military base at Praan (which was Isorian only a few decades before). Here, they established a refugee orbital and the surviving troops and starships decided to remain to defend and support the refugees.
At Praan, the Exeth division and its starships became key component in the subsequent Concord resistance to repeated Senatex incursions. Their brave defence and resilience despite near-annihilation earned them the nickname ‘The Martyrs’. The extreme heroism shown by the Exeth troopers quickly gained the division a reputation that gave them solid arguments to only recruit the best candidates, though in 7A1300 those born and bred within the Exeth Refugee Colony are automatically accepted – a role is found for them no matter their capabilities.
Their nickname is reflected in the colours they most often wear on parade: the bright red of fresh blood. To honour their lost drone minds this is often paired with a suitable metallic such as gold or copper.
The decision to keep the survivors together is one the Concord IMTel has often returned to as an optimum pattern when looking at similar situations. This is because the Exeth refugees and their descendents ended up becoming a major source of volunteers for the frontier C3 forces, establishing a military service tradition from their new orbital colony. Furthermore, the tradition epitomised gritty, grim resilience and rescue – the ability to survive at all costs.
Though nominally consisting of a number of strike brigades (or battlegroups), the Martyrs, as a whole, are one of the elite military organisations in the Concord, constantly on alert at their base on Praan. It is their fervent wish they will be the first to retake Exeth from the Senatex when it is possible to do so, an attitude the IMTel tolerates, if not encourages.
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