Disclaimer- I don't own MSG or Zeonic Front, they are the property of Bandai Entertainment and their respective creators. One can only dream.
So, this is my first Gundam fanfic, not really, but the first one I published. It's a re-telling of Mobile Suit Gundam- Zeonic Front. I used some license, but it's pretty faithful to the game's storyline, just branches out at the very end. I'm using army rather than navy ranks and the spellings from the game manual.
It is the year 0079 of the Universal Century. A half-century has passed since mankind began moving its burgeoning population to gigantic orbiting space colonies. Where people are born and raised, and die.
The colonies furthest from the Earth, Side 3, proclaimed itself the Duchy of Zeon and launched a war of independence against the Earth Federation. Initial fighting lasted one month and half the human population was lost. People were horrified at the indescribable atrocities that had been committed in the name of independence.
3 months have passed since the war began, they are at a stalemate. Zeon invaded Earth with the purpose of securing land and resources for the long war ahead. At the head of the invasion forces were the fearsome Zeon humanoid fighters known as mobile suits. At the head of the mobile suit forces was one unit:
The Midnight Fenrir
1600 Universal Century 0079, March 10
Earth Orbit, above North America,
2nd Fleet of the Space Attack Force
Zeon Gwazine Class Battleship Gwazine
Major Garret Schmitzer limped down the corridor of the Blackstalker on the way to the briefing. He was a decorated veteran of the Battle of Loum, the most costly battle in the War so far. He had been injured in the battle and lost the lower half of his left leg. He now walked with the aid of a crutch. Under orders from Rear Admiral Kycillia Zabi, he had formed the Midnight Fenrir Corps as a special operations group in preparation for the Second Earth Descent Operation scheduled for 0300 on March 11. Tomorrow. The Major knew full well the significance of this one operation- since the beginning of the Universal Century, the Earth Sphere had been dominated by the Federation. This one operation just might signal the end of their dominance.
"Rear Admiral Zabi, Major Garret Schmitzer reporting as ordered!" He said as he stood at attention in the briefing room.
"At ease major." The woman responded as she turned from the tactical map. Even though she and Schmitzer had a close working relationship, he was nevertheless intimidated by the tall, thin woman in front of him. Her masked face never showed any emotion and her high, stern voice made even a compliment sound like a reprimand.
"Thank you for volunteering your unit for this operation. I believe you know my younger brother, Colonel Garma Zabi?"
"Yes ma'am. We fought together at Loum." Schmitzer answered as Garma Zabi walked into the room. He was as handsome as his sister was imposing, and as personable as she was reserved. He brushed stray hair out of his face as he addressed the major.
"Garret, I'm pleased to see you again. How's the leg?"
"It's coming along rather well sir, I can pilot my zaku again finally."
"I heard about that, Zeonic's scientists reconfigured the controls to two pedals instead of four. I'm glad you're leading a facet of this operation. I'll be interested to see if your skill as a tactician match your talent as a pilot." Garma said as he took his seat at the briefing table.
"Thank you for your confidence, sir. I look forward to serving under you." Garret answered as he also took his seat.
The commanders of other mobile suit units arrived soon after Schmitzer. He recognized several of them: Col. Walter Curtis, Lt. Col. Norris Packard, Gen. Yuri Kellarny, Col. M'Quve, and Capt. Steiner Hardy among others. As they took their seat around the large briefing table, Kycilia stood at the head to deliver the briefing.
" Good afternoon officers. As you all have read the details of the operation and the overall objectives, I will proceed with the specifics of the Operation. As you know, there will be three areas invaded in the initial stages of this operation: Europe, Australia, and North America. General Kellarny and Colonel M'Quve: your units will invade the European Theater, specifically the Odessa region. Your objective is to hold the region and advance outward as the opportunity presents itself. Colonel Curtis and Lieutenant Colonel Packard- you will land and establish a beachhead in Australia in preparation for a push into Southeast Asia. The strategy for these two continents is very simple: attack and destroy. There is no overreaching strategy other than that of general outward expansion. Do not over-extend your supply lines." As she finished this portion of the operation, she paused as the commanders took notes on what she had said.
" Are there any questions?" she asked, when the officers responded in the negative, she continued, " Very well, on to North America. I don't think I need to mention that this continent is the most important target. Our forces in North America will establish a beachhead for the invasion of South America and the destruction of Jaburo- Federation general head quarters. In the first phase, Captain Hardy and the Cyclops team will knock out an radar early warning station in northern California and the Midnight Fenrir under Major Schmitzer will do the same at an airbase in Montreal. In the second phase, four divisions of mobile suits and other vehicles will descend, two each to east and west. The eastern force will take control of New Yark and the surrounding area. The western force will proceed to take over the series of installations known as California Base. Colonel Garma Zabi will be the commander of this invasion effort, known henceforth as the Zeon Earth Attack Force. I do not need to remind you that the success of this operation rests on your actions- we cannot give the Federation time to counter attack. This invasion cannot fail. The Operation begins a 0300 tomorrow. Dismissed!"
As the commanders left the briefing room to brief their own units, Garret limped down the hall already planning Fenrir's attack. He would have three teams of mobile suits. Nine suits total. More than enough. However, when he returned to the Fenrir's Chivvay Blackstalker, there was a hitch in his plan. The supply unit could only obtain six mobile suits. Garret called an emergency meeting with his pilots and technical staff to re-plan the attack.
"What the hell's going on? I'm supposed to be in bed for another six hours!" Sergeant Major Matt Austin bellowed as he stormed into the room. Loud and coarse, the Sergeant major was a veteran of mobile suit combat from its inception.
"Wow Matt, it's a wonder you've been written up for insubordination 15 times." Captain Lou Roher observed as he turned to face the enlisted man. Capt. Roher had gained notoriety during Operation British for destroying a Magellan-class battleship using only his heat hawk.
"Enough gentleman." Maj. Schmitzer ordered as he walked into the room. Behind him came the technical officer, Migaki; the head mechanic; and a pretty, young 1st Lieutenant with deep red hair.
"Yo! Major what's with the coed, shouldn't she still be out at a bar somewhere?" Austin shouted when he saw the young girl.
"Go to Hell, old man"
"Got an attitude, this one."
"Really Austin! For once could you just put a lid on it! This is Lieutenant Charlotte Hepner, she comes to us from the Academy. I requested her myself as she actually saw combat during a training exercise. Now if you're all done acting like high schoolers, we have actual business to attend to. The supply unit just notified me that they could not locate another unit of Zaku II's for this operation. As it stands right now, we have three Zaku II F's and three Zaku I A's. It is my decision that Roher and Austin are the team for this mission. Hepner will fill the operator's position. Lou do yo-"
"WHAT? I'm sorry to interrupt sir, but I prepared just as hard for this operation as they did I-"
"Lieutenant! I selected these two for one reason and one reason only- they have seen actual combat against a prepared Federal force more than once. Don't question my authority again. Now, Lou, since you wrote the plan for this operation, what do you suggest we do to compensate for the loss of 3 suits?"
"Sir, I think that the plan will work just fine as is. The only change I should suggest is that Blue Team double back and join Red Team for the attack on the command center, since we no longer have a Greed Team."
"Good. That's the plan then. Migaki, are the experimental sensors installed in the suits?"
"Yes sir," the tech chief responded, adjusting his glasses, "and the balancers have been readjusted for Earth's gravity. There are no problems that I can foresee right now."
"Thank you, and Sergeant Anderson, is all the ordinance loaded and the weapons checked?" Schmitzer asked, turning to the young man in charge of Fenrir's mobile suits' maintenance.
"Yes sir. Everything's ready for combat.," He answered, "if there's nothing else sir, I need to go to supervise the loading of the suits into the HLV."
"Yes, go ahead and take care of that. Get some sleep, all of you. You board the HLV at 0245 tomorrow morning. Don't be late."
Six hours later, Austin, Roher, and their respective wingmen were in the hangar of the HLV preparing to board their mobile suits. As they put on their pilot suits, Schmitzer came to see them off.
"Remember, gentlemen, re-entry will be rough, and your mobile suits won't operate the same inside Earth's gravity. This is a surprise attack, you must move quickly to subdue any enemies before they can sound the alarm. We can't let them organize. Good hunting."
"All hands- prepare for departure. Mobile suit pilots- board your zakus and strap in" Lt. Hepner said over the comm., " There'll be a comm. blackout during re-entry, once you land I'll be able to guide you to your target."
"Launching in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1- Launch!"
With a lurch, the HLV broke away from the Chivvay and entered the atmosphere. Its hull glowed red with the heat of atmospheric friction. After 30 minutes, the HLV reached the upper atmosphere- the first Zeon troops to land on the Earth.
0330 Montreal, Former Canada, North American Territory
After the HLV set down, the hatch fell open, and six zaku's stepped out. The first, a MS-06F Zaku II piloted by Roher, activated its mono-eye camera and surveyed the area.
"So this is Earth. Seems pretty calm out here." He remarked.
"Yeah, well, we'll soon fix that!" Austin shouted as he stepped out of the HLV with his team of MS-05A Zaku I's. Every hard point on his suit was occupied by a magazine for the 280mm Bazooka it held in its hands.
"Teams, report in!" Hepner's voice came through over the speakers
"Blue team, all clear." Roher responded curtly as he adjusted the seatbelt and checked his ammo.
"Red team, ready to blow some shit up!" Austin shouted into the comm.
"Sergeant major Austin-that's not exactly proper comm. protocol, now is it?" Schmitzer said as his face appeared on the pilots' monitors, "Alright- advance on the airbase, you mission is a go!"
"Roger," Roher radioed as he signaled the other pilots to advance.
The mobile suits began to walk through an abandoned town near their landing point. They were halfway through when Austin's wingman's proximity alarm blared a warning.
"Sergeant, I'm detecting enemy nearby!"
"I've got 'em Heine! Red Team engaging enemy!"
With that, he targeted the enemy with a radar lock and fired his bazooka. The enemy they detected turned out to be a squad of Type 61 Main Battle Tanks, sent out to investigate their landing.
"It's a Zaku!" A Federal soldier screamed just before the bazooka round obliterated his tank.
Heine charged in with his 105mm machine gun and shredded the remaining two tanks.
"Hey! Roher! You see anything; we just got some feddies over here!"
"Yeah, I just took out some tanks to. We better move fast, before they realize that we're here."
"Commander, we've lost contact with the tanks we sent out!" A Federation officer at their HQ exclaimed, "You don't think, could it be..."
"No, I don't think the Zeon would invade. We still hold the Earth at least, those fighters wouldn't be nearly as effective down here, at least, I don't think so," the commander responded as he shifted uncomfortably in his seat, "Send some tanks to the control tower and into the forest. Keep the rest here, just in case."
After subduing some automated turrets, the mobile suit teams entered a large forest between the city and the airfield. Despite the suit's 50 feet height, the trees provided good cover.
"Lou, head over to the control tower and take it out. We'll hold the line here for the assault on the command center."
The Zaku II team headed in the direction of the control tower. Just then, Austin came under fire from a Federation tank, losing part of his zaku's skirt armor in the process.
"Shit! Eat lead and die asshole!"
His team destroyed the tanks, but now it was obvious that they were in the area. The element of surprise had been lost.
"Damn, Lou, you better finish and get back here- the feddies know we're coming now!"
"On my way back, the control tower's destroyed."
The Captain emerged out of the forest, a power cable dangling from his suit's backpack, the casualty of a confrontation with Federal tanks. As they advanced on the command center, it became clear that something wasn't right.
"Hold!" Roher yelled as he held up a hand to signal the rest of the team, "Where's the command center, we should see it by now. Wait, thermal sensors are picking up a heat source! Weapons discharge! Take evasive action NOW!"
The Zeon soldiers activated their rocket thrusters and spilt apart as three large shells fell right where they had been standing and exploded. The shockwave and flame leveled a good amount of trees and a Zaku II as they retreated further back into the forest.
"What the hell was that? Command, talk to me!" Roher screamed as he tried to drag his wingman's legless suit along with him.
"Captain! That's a Big Tray land warship- I'm looking at a satellite image right now!" Schmitzer shouted into the radio as the Chivvay's CIC went crazy. Communication officers trying to warn the descending assault teams of the battleship's presence, commanders trying to halt any more launches and everyone trying to warn Col. Zabi aboard the first HLV to depart after the Fenrir.
"Major, I think we should retreat! They'll never survive out there! Let's re-assault the airfield when the rest of the attack teams land!" Hepner shouted to her commander, a look of panic on her face.
"No! Captain, you have to take that battleship out, and fast! It can shoot the HLV's out of the sky and Col. Zabi is aboard the first one!" Schmitzer responded.
"Is he insane! How can we destroy it when we can't get close to it?" Austin bellowed, slamming his hand on his console, "Lou, You better have some plan!"
"Okay, here's the plan," Roher said, regaining his composure, "All mobile suits will throw napalm grenades followed by smoke grenades. They' won't be able to tell which heat sources are grenades and which are mobile suits. We'll advance unseen in the smoke and blitz the warship. We'll hit it with machine guns. Matt, you take out the bride with the bazooka."
"Let's get one with it!"
They deployed the grenades and waited for them to take effect, then the pilots moved into action. They ran forward, rapidly firing their machine guns at the Big Tray. Austin ran right up next to the battleship, hit his boosters and fired one shell point blank into the center of the tri-level bridge. As it exploded, the levels of the bridge collapsed on each other.
"Cea…fir…we….surr..der!" the commander of the Big Tray groaned into the comm.
"All units we accept the enemy's request to surrender. Cease-fire and secure the area for the assault force. Good job everyone!" Schmitzer ordered as he sank into a chair in the CIC.
"Are you okay, sir?" Charlotte asked him as he unbuttoned his collar and wiped the sweat from his forehead.
"I will be. That was more than I anticipated. At least they succeeded. If they hadn't… Well, at least we proved the advantage of a fast strike mobile suit unit today. I guess we should prepare for our descent to Earth."
As he walked to the hangar to board his Komusai shuttle, Schmitzer breathed a sigh of great relief. He was sure for a moment, just a moment, that he had sent his men into an ambush that none would walk away from. Something he promised himself he would never do, again.
End of Chapter 1