Clan Wolf(Redirected from Wolf Empire)
|“||Here, with the Strana Mechty wolf, we see what may be the epitome of a warrior, cunning matched with instinct and stealth, joined with a final, terrifying attack. For this mighty creature, I name you. You are Clan Wolf.||”|
|— Nicholas Kerensky, 2810|
|“||We are Wolves, my Khan. We are the masters of war. It is our element. No true harm can come to us when we are engaged in it.||”|
|— Star Colonel Alaric Wolf, 17 December 3136|
Clan Wolf (from 3142 the Wolf Empire) was not only one of the original twenty Clans founded by Nicholas Kerensky, but was also given the distinct honor of carrying forth Kerensky's name and his genetic legacy. This status as caretaker of the Kerensky Bloodname also served as a source of conflict with other Clans, especially Clan Jade Falcon, which felt slighted by the ilKhan's decision. Named for the massive wolves of Strana Mechty, which grow to nearly twice the size of their ancestors on Terra, the Wolf Clan has been a dominant force in the Clans since its inception. Responsible for the Annihilation of Clan Wolverine and the Absorption of Clan Widowmaker, Clan Wolf was also instrumental in the development of Battle Armor. The leader of the Warden faction in the Grand Council, the Clan was nevertheless forced to participate in the Clan Invasion of the Inner Sphere, where they proceeded to outshine all other Clans in the number of worlds conquered. Clan Wolf was nearly destroyed by its hated enemy the Jade Falcons in the Refusal War that followed, but although the Clan survived it was split in two: a Crusader-minded Clan Wolf and Warden-minded Clan Wolf-in-Exile.
|Time period:||2807 – present|
|Capital world:||Gienah (as of 3145)|
|Military:||Clan Wolf Touman|
|Secret Service:||Clan Wolf Watch|
In the years that followed this divide Clan Wolf rebuilt its strength, but suffered severely during the Word of Blake Jihad even as it was forced from the Clan Homeworlds and Clan Hell's Horses carved out its own Occupation Zone from the Wolves' coreward territory. Two generations of relative peace allowed Clan Wolf to recover from these setbacks, so that when the Blackout set off a new round of wars and chaos the Clan was able to carry off a mass migration from their Occupation Zone deep into the Inner Sphere. Clan Wolf conquered over sixty worlds from the revived Free Worlds League and the Lyran Commonwealth before proclaiming itself reborn as the Wolf Empire on 1 January 3142. By 3145 the Wolf Empire was poised to strike into the Republic of the Sphere's remaining territory in an effort to seize Terra itself.
Clan Wolf was founded by Jerome Winson, an officer in the Star League Defense Force who served under General Aleksandr Kerensky during the Amaris Civil War. After Kerensky's family was rescued from Moscow during the final battle for Terra, Jerome became something of an older brother to Aleksandr's two sons, Andery and Nicholas. When Aleksandr proposed an Exodus from the Inner Sphere, Jerome was among those who chose to follow him.
Jerome maintained a close association with the Kerensky family on the Pentagon Worlds, and as the threat of civil war threatened to consume the Star League-in-Exile he again chose to follow a Kerensky, this time Nicholas, when he called for another exodus. On Strana Mechty the bond between Jerome and Nicholas only grew stronger following the marriage of Jennifer Winson. Eventually Jerome was chosen to be the first Khan of the Wolf Clan, and under his leadership the Wolves became the first to be combat certified by Nicholas.
The ilKhan implemented a number of brutal measures in the months following the success of Operation KLONDIKE, seeking to bring about a total reform of society and prevent any more devastating infighting, although these measures also brought about mounting criticisms from some of the other Clans. Chief among these critics was Clan Wolverine, whose opposition to the ilKhan crystallized in October 2823 when they were forced to give up a Brian Cache they claimed as theirs and theirs alone. Their actions, including ultimately the use of a nuclear weapon to destroy the genetic repository of Clan Snow Raven, gave the ilKhan all the evidence he needed to call for a Trial of Annihilation: the Grand Council voted unanimously on 11 October to approve the measure.
Over the next few days all of the Clans bid for the right to carry out the Grand Council's decision, until eventually it came down to a contest between Clan Wolf and Clan Widowmaker. Already there was bitter enmity between these two Clans and, according to the Wolves, the Widowmakers deliberately drove the bidding down to dangerous levels before withdrawing. This meant that Clan Wolf would be outnumbered when they finally confronted the Wolverines, a fact which very much pleased Clan Widowmaker.
Nonetheless the Wolves began their assault on 25 October and for two days confronted the traitors on land, in the air and in space around Circe. Despite being outnumbered Clan Wolf succeeded in driving Clan Wolverine from their homeworld and for the next nineteen days continued to hunt the survivors as they fled across Clan space. In the end the Wolverines' warriors were completely wiped out, although the Wolf force had suffered heavy losses themselves with almost eighty percent killed. The next two months were spent completely dismantling the Wolverines' infrastructure, terminating all Wolverine sibkos and sterilizing the Clan's civilian survivors.
When a final report was made on 22 January, 2824, the Wolf Clan Loremaster noted numerous discrepancies between official Wolverine records and battlefield kill tallies. While the majority of front-line warriors were accounted for, it appeared a number of second-line troops and some civilians were missing, along with a sizable cache of equipment. Ultimately these were rationalized as shoddy bookkeeping, although in truth the Grand Council suspected that part of Clan Wolverine had escaped.
Absorbing the WidowmakersEdit
In the wake of the Wolverine Annihilation all of the Clans turned towards the task of rebuilding a society devastated by civil war. By 2830 industries were rebuilt, food production rose to its highest point and new colonies in the Kerensky Cluster were being founded, officially starting what the Clans would call the Golden Century. Clan Wolf itself became an economic powerhouse, thanks in part to their encouragement of their merchant caste to trade throughout Clan space. Unfortunately in the years since the Trial of Annihilation, the animosity between Clans Wolf and Widowmaker only continued to grow, each one declaring Trials of Possession against the other which often skirted the rules of honorable combat. This conflict eventually came to a head between the two in 2834.
In order to meet their growing demand for raw resources, the merchants of Clan Wolf made an initial approach to the merchants of Clan Widowmaker for a year's worth of production from their bauxite mines on Dagda, bauxite being a vital component of Ferro-Aluminum Armor. While amiable to trading with them, the Widowmaker merchants were overruled by their Khans and the deal fell through. This forced the Wolves to declare a formal challenge for the bauxite and in the Trial of Possession which followed the Wolves were victorious. Angry at being forced to give away a valuable resource due to what they saw as their warrior caste's arrogance, the Widowmaker merchants took the drastic step of formally petitioning the Grand Council to censure their Khan, Cal Jorgensson, for his negligence. Fearing that the Wolf Khan Jerome Winson was behind this seditious petition Khan Jorgensson took drastic action: on 7 June mass arrests were carried out and the protest's ringleaders were executed.
In the Grand Council Khan Jorgensson formally charged Khan Winson with agitating his merchants to revolt against his rule, a claim which the Wolf Khan vehemently denied. In his own counter-charge Khan Winson argued that Jorgensson's massacring of his own people showed not only that the Widowmaker Khan was unfit to lead his people, but so was his Clan's warrior caste, and demanded the right to Absorb the Widowmaker Clan. For nearly a week the matter was debated in the Grand Council, but in the end the vote was unanimous in favor of Clan Wolf. Not only had Jorgensson's actions genuinely shocked the other Clans, but Clan Widowmaker had made too many enemies and few strong allies. After the vote the Widowmakers called for a Trial of Refusal, and in the bidding that followed the Wolves fought hard to earn the right to refute their enemy's refusal.
The battle took place 7 October at a neutral site, the Steitz Plains of Ironhold, capital world of the Jade Falcons. The forces opposed were nearly even at a Cluster each, although the Wolves had eleven Stars to the Widowmakers' ten. Due to the serious nature of the fight and bitter history between the two Clans, the ilKhan himself and all of the Khans of the other Clans would serve as referees, while beyond the battlefield other Clan warriors watched eagerly through monitors and satellites. When the battle commenced the initial exchange between both sides was fierce, but eventually Khan Winson and Khan Jorgensson found each other and declared a Trial of Grievance. While the two warriors faced each other the battle around them died down as those present formed an impromptu Circle of Equals around the dueling Khans.
Just as it appeared Jerome Winson was ready to defeat his opponent, a Star of Widowmaker 'Mechs jumped to their Khan's defense and attacked the Wolf Khan. Whether this was on their own volition or in response to orders was unknown but the flagrant violation of zellbrigen caused the other Khans, including the ilKhan himself in his personalized Atlas, to immediately intercede in Jerome's defense. What happened next according to Khan Jorgensson's later testimony was an accident, a result of his dazed state caused by the Wolf Khan's attacks and his warrior's unexpected actions. Seeing something stooping over his fallen 'Mech the Widowmaker Khan instinctively shot it square in the head with a Large Laser, too late realizing that it was the ilKhan's 'Mech he just hit. Combat came to an abrupt halt as technicians and medics rushed towards the ilKhan, but by the time they reached his 'Mech Nicholas Kerensky was already dead.
The warriors of Clan Wolf were driven insane with rage and fell upon the surviving Widowmaker warriors. Only Khan Jorgensson was spared, just long enough for the briefest of trials to determine his guilt and arrange his execution. Over the next three days and with the aid of the other Clans the Wolves managed to track down every last Widowmaker warrior, even those in the most remote outposts, and exacted their revenge. The last of these battles took place on the Widowmaker capital of Roche, where the remaining Widowmaker warriors were pursued to the deserted city of Porthos. As the Wolf forces entered the city's downtown district, Widowmaker saKhan Kyle Vordermark sprung his trap: two Trinaries of Widowmaker 'Mechs appeared from their hiding places and surrounded the Wolf warriors, while through the external speakers of his own 'Mech saKhan Vordermark taunted the Wolves with their imminent demise.
Luckily a group of Clan Goliath Scorpion warriors had been observing the battle, among them Khan Cyrus Elam and Loremaster Ethan Moreau. Driven by his surkairede to defend the kin of Nicholas, Loremaster Moreau charged his Black Knight into the city, followed quickly by the rest of the Goliath Scorpions. Their impromptu charge broke through the trap and both Scorpions and Wolves fought together against the Widowmakers. During the fighting both the Scorpion Khan and Widowmaker saKhan engaged in a heated duel with each other but were killed by an artillery barrage of unknown origin; this same barrage also destroyed two whole Stars of 'Mechs. The arrival of Clan Wolf reinforcements finally ended the battle, which also served to mark the official end of Clan Widowmaker's existence. Despite the timely arrival of the Goliath Scorpions in saving their forces the Wolves were initially outraged at the interference, although Khan Winson eventually accepted that Moreau's surkairede was an honor debt to his entire Clan and richly rewarded the Goliath Scorpions.
Over the objections of the Jade Falcons the Grand Council unanimously granted the Wolves' demand to claim all Widowmaker resources, something which only further increased their power relative to the other Clans. Very few Widowmaker warriors survived to be Absorbed. Jerome Winson was elected to take Nicholas' place as ilKhan of the Clans, although ironically with the Great Founder's death the position immediately began to lose some of its prestige. While ilKhan Winson's authority in matters concerning all of the Clans was always respected, this was less so in matters considered strictly internal to a given Clan. This trend would continue with future ilKhans until eventually the position lapsed.
An Age of GrowthEdit
While all of the Clans benefited from one degree to another during the Golden Century, Clan Wolf remained in the forefront of new developments and economic expansion. This was thanks in part to the fact that the Wolves allowed their civilian castes a measure of freedom unseen in most other Clans, granting them the opportunity to explore and create. While the feud with Clan Jade Falcon at times threatened the Wolves' dominance - carving out enclaves on Dagda and Glory to harass Wolf facilities there - the Falcons' rigid adherence to tradition curtailed their ability to grant the civilian castes even the limited freedoms necessary for large-scale colonization projects. This left Clan Wolf free to fully exploit new worlds discovered within the Kerensky Cluster and establish major industrial centers on Paxon and Tiber.
When Clan Coyote unveiled the OmniMech in 2854, Clan Wolf knew that it would need this technology to maintain its edge but that its current research and development resources were already dedicated to another project and it could take years, even decades, to retool for OmniTechnology development. Fighting a Trial of Possession over the technology was also out of the question since the Coyotes were strong allies in the Grand Council. Fortune came to the Wolves' aid when the Coyotes informed the Clan that the Jade Falcons had just recently won the technology from them, and provided details on the specific unit which had fought in the Trial of Possession. Armed with this knowledge the Wolf Clan succeeded in intercepting the Jade Falcons and seizing from them copies of the OmniMech designs they had so recently won. The result was that Clan Wolf was only a few years behind Clan Coyote and on par with the rest of the Clans in terms of OmniMech technology.
In thanks for their tip-off the Wolves also let the Coyotes in on the special project which was currently occupying their efforts. In 2842 Clan Goliath Scorpion unveiled new Exoskeleton designs, nicknamed "water elementals", for use in undersea mining operations. After witnessing them in action Wolf merchants offered the Goliath Scorpions access to almost all of Dagda's oceans in exchange for these new suits. For the next couple of decades much of Clan Wolf's R&D efforts were dedicated to developing this technology to create new armored infantry. While environment-specific suits were prototyped, Wolf scientists eventually settled on a suit able to operate in a variety of environments, and their efforts were completed in late 2867. The final product was christened Elemental battle armor, so named because it could fight in any element, and in 2868 two Stars of these suits defeated a light Star of Clan Nova Cat OmniMechs in a Trial of Possession.
Immediately following the Trial Clan Hell's Horses, which had been developing their eugenics program to produce genetically superior conventional infantry, demanded a Trial of Possession for this new technology. The Wolves were sufficiently impressed with the Hell's Horses' new super-soldiers and Wolf Khan Alexis Ward agreed to a series of three Trials with Horse Khan Eric Amirault on Tiber. Each Clan wagered examples their respective technology, a third of which was bid in each of the three Trials. The Wolves managed to win two of the three and so won glory by taking a larger portion of the Hell's Horses' wager, although their victory was somewhat diminished with Clan Jade Falcon swooped in shortly afterwards and stole examples of both battle armor and genetic super-soldiers. Clan Wolf posted a sarcastic congratulation of the Jade Falcons' daring raid on the Chatterweb, which was enough for Clan Fire Mandrill and Clan Coyote to conduct similar raids on the Jade Falcons just two months later.
Soon the tradition of mating these new battle suits with Elemental super-soldiers spread to the rest of the Clans, although not without a fight: the Wolves were successful in holding off many Trials of Possession for a number of years, forcing several of the Clans to scavenge the technology from each other. Clan Sea Fox was able to trade Elemental technology from the Wolves in exchange for HarJel, a self-sealing substance that was later incorporated into Elemental suits. Feeling they were owed something Clan Goliath Scorpions also traded for Elemental suits, giving the Wolves access to three of their most cherished Bloodheritages with the understanding Clan Wolf would only use them to breed for three cycles and never challenge the Scorpion's control of the associated Bloodnames. Clan Ice Hellion used subterfuge during their Trial, bidding conventional infantry and sneaking in new combat vehicles, and while successful their underhandedness earned them the enmity of the Wolves. Clan Smoke Jaguar tried repeatedly to win the technology from Clan Wolf, even if they could have had an easier time taking it from the other Clans, and the Wolves took great pleasure in repeatedly beating them in the Trials. Eventually after a final battle where Clan Wolf was heavily outnumbered yet won thanks to the debut of the Timber Wolf design, the Smoke Jaguars gave up and won the technology from the Sea Foxes.
The Dragoon CompromiseEdit
As the Golden Century came to a close, a new division arose within Clan society, leading to what would be known as the Political Century. On one side stood the Crusaders, who believed it was time that the Clans return to the Inner Sphere as conquerors, while on the other were the Wardens who believed the Clans' role was to protect the Inner Sphere not "liberate" it. At first Clan Wolf remained largely neutral in the debate but as the years wore on they eventually came down on the side of the Wardens and, alongside Clan Coyote, headed the Warden faction in the Grand Council.
By the dawn of the thirty-first century public opinion in the Clans was swaying towards the Crusader camp, however even those Wolves who adhered to the Crusader philosophy thought their compatriots in other Clans were too quick to leap into the unknown. The Clans were blind as to what was going on in the Inner Sphere and an early effort known as Intelstar brought back fragmented rumors from the Periphery. When in 3000 Khan Nadia Winson of Clan Ghost Bear, herself a former Wolf warrior taken as abtakha, proposed an invasion vote in the Grand Council, the Wolf Khan Kerlin Ward managed to outmaneuver the Crusaders with what became known as the Dragoon Compromise. A small unit of Clan Wolf warriors disguised as mercenaries would infiltrate the Inner Sphere, make a thorough survey of the situation, and report back to the Clans.
Rather than risk their best warriors it was decided that the Wolf's Dragoons would be composed largely of freeborns with a few trueborns and led by Joshua and Jaime Wolf, themselves freeborns. Although many of the Clans objected to this roster, it was ultimately decided that Clan Wolf had the right to compose the unit as they saw fit. In a surprise move the Goliath Scorpion saKhan Ren Posavatz won unopposed a bid to train this new unit and used the Heartvenom Cluster, the elite special forces of Clan Goliath Scorpion, to transform the Dragoons into a match for any front-line Cluster.
In 3004 the unit was ready to go when Khan Ward made the surprise announcement that the Dragoons' mission would last twenty-five years, holding off the invasion until 3030 at the earliest and causing a near-rebellion by Clan Ice Hellion. For the next few years Wolf's Dragoons reported back to the Clans with intelligence which not only gave vital data on the operation of the Great Houses' militaries but vastly contradicted their preconceived notions of the state of the Inner Sphere. During the closing years of the Third Succession War however these reports became less frequent, until finally around 3019 they stopped reporting altogether.
Delaying the inevitableEdit
The apparent desertion of Wolf's Dragoons caught a divided Grand Council off-guard and further agitated the Great Debate between Crusaders and Wardens. With their sole source on the Inner Sphere's current situation gone and unable to agree to a replacement, the Clans were left with only hearsay. In late 3029 rumors reached the Clans of the Federated Suns and Lyran Commonwealth joining in union, the Crusaders saw this as the first step in the Inner Sphere uniting on its own and reason enough to intervene now so that the Clans could restore the Star League on their terms. Khan Ward' successor, Khan Ulric Kerensky, managed to stall a vote in the Grand Council until news of the Fourth Succession War reached the Clans and undercut the Crusaders' argument. By a slim margin he was able to pass a resolution holding off the invasion vote until the that conflict's resolution, buying more time for Wardens and antagonizing the Crusaders and the head of their faction, Clan Jade Falcon. A similar situation arose with the War of 3039 and was similarly diffused.
In 3048 Clan Smoke Jaguar dropped a bombshell: they had captured the ComStar exploration ship Outbound Light in orbit of their homeworld Huntress. Using information he purported to have gleaned from the captured vessel, Khan Leo Showers presented evidence that was the Federated Commonwealth was well on its way to conquering the rest of the Inner Sphere and declaring itself the reborn Star League, and that furthermore ComStar was close to revealing the location of the Clan homeworlds and opening them up to attack from the Inner Sphere. The very thought of a reverse-invasion by the Inner Sphere was anathema to the Clans, and on 21 November the Grand Council voted almost unanimously for invasion.
Only Clan Wolf stood opposed to the invasion and Khan Ulric Kerensky demanded a Trial of Refusal. While the odds initially stood at sixteen to one, bidding eventually reduced that to four to one, with the Third Battle Cluster facing off against Leo Showers' Crusaders. Fighting valiantly the Wolves came close to seizing victory from Showers and his forces, but in the end sheer numbers overwhelmed them and the Trial was lost. Within weeks Leo Showers was elected ilKhan and preparations for the invasion were begun immediately.
Wolves across the borderEdit
Clan Wolf was automatically given the right to participate as one of the four Clans to invade the Inner Sphere by dint of their Kerensky heritage, however ilKhan Showers was determined to shame them for their opposition. When the invasion route was divided into four "corridors" the Wolves were given the least prestigious, running mostly through the weaker Free Rasalhague Republic, and the ilKhan's headquarters would be placed aboard the Wolf flagship Dire Wolf, implying that they needed his supervision. There was also division within the Clan, with strong Crusader faction led by saKhan Garth Radick who wanted to prove their worth in the invasion in opposition to Ulric Kerensky and the Wardens which opposed it in principle. Eventually an understanding was reached between the two factions. In the words of Ulric Kerensky "The best revenge against those who forced it on us is to best them at it."
The first opposition the Wolves met in the course of their invasion were on the planets of the Periphery, small numbers of enemy forces operating machines dilapidated even by Inner Sphere standards. Despite the ease with which they destroyed these forces, Wolf warriors came to respect their opponents, especially the Kell Hounds whom they faced on The Rock, and study their fighting styles. They freely offered this information to the other Clans but it was met only with derision for the dishonorable way the barbarians conducted themselves. It was during the battle for The Rock that Clan Wolf made perhaps its most important acquisition: the capture of Phelan Kell.
The first two waves of the invasion were cautious successes for the Wolves, sticking to their initial plan of invading six worlds per wave. Their opposition mostly consisted of Rasalhague forces which were easily swept aside by the Clan advance, a function of both the disdain which Rasalhagians felt towards the mercenaries who defended them and paralysis among their government's high command. In truth though no Inner Sphere force was truly equipped for the surprise attack of such advanced foes, and what Federated Commonwealth worlds they invaded fell just as easily.
The Pack races aheadEdit
Clan Wolf began the third wave of the invasion with the surprise plan to invade nearly twice as many worlds as before. They succeeded in no small part to the considerable concern Ulric Kerensky gave to the matter of logistics. Whereas the other Clans were willing to invade worlds with only one or two ammunition reloads and wait for their merchant caste to bring up more supplies from the rear, Ulric increased the flow of supplies and took the daring chance of forward deploying supply caches in enemy territory. This drastically cut down the amount of time it took to repair and refit his forces and allowed the Wolves to proceed at their quickened pace.
The third wave plan also brought them into conflict with Clan Ghost Bear, which desired the capital world of Rasalhague and lay close enough to the border of their invasion corridor to bid for against the Wolves. A fierce bidding war took place between the two side on the Dire Wolf in July, and while Clan Wolf won they were forced to go way below the cutdown and invade with only three Clusters. Despite this disadvantage the Wolves were successful in conquering Rasalhague, in no small part thanks to the information provided by Phelan Kell.
Clan Wolf launched the fourth wave ahead of schedule and again targeted far more worlds than before; by the end of the advance in October 3050 Clan Wolf had conquered twice as many worlds as any other Clan. Beyond the valor and skill of Wolf warriors this success was attributable to Ulric's logistical planning, including the acquisition of local resources in a fair and just manner. Unsurprisingly this success also embarrassed and enraged the other Clans, and Leo Showers was determined to put the brakes on his rival's breakneck pace. He convened a Grand Council meeting, planning to censure or remove Ulric from command, but never got the chance to implement his plan. On 1 November the Dire Wolf came under attack by Rasalhagian forces, and the ilKhan was killed by a kamikaze attack from Tyra Miraborg.
On the journey back to Clan space to elect a new ilKhan, the other invading Clans conspired to get back at Ulric for the death of Leo Showers. At first they attempted to convict him of being directly responsible for the ilKhan death but thanks to testimony from Phelan Kell, who had also saved Ulric from the same attack which killed Leo Showers, the Wolf Khan was exonerated. Foiled they then attempted to get back at Ulric in a more unconventional way, electing him to replace Leo and thereby forcing him to command the invasion for which he was against philosophically. They also hoped this would free up Ulric's position as Wolf Khan for another Crusader-minded warrior. Again Ulric side-stepped them by nominating Natasha Kerensky to take his place, then thanked the Crusaders for their support by assigning Clan Nova Cat and Clan Steel Viper to "assist" Clans Smoke Jaguar and Jade Falcon, forcing the two to give up planets to their new allies and causing friction within their occupation zones.
A year had passed when the invasion resumed with the fifth wave, but despite the best efforts of the Inner Sphere to prepare Clan Wolf continued to steam over their opposition. Clan Wolf continued to conquer more worlds than any other Clan and at a much faster pace, thanks to their meticulous planning, excellent logistics and the skill of their warriors. By the end of the wave Clan Wolf was in the lead and well on its way to being the first Clan to reach Terra and so become ilClan.
When ilKhan Ulric Kerensky personally told ComStar of their destination, the Order was stunned. Where before they had cooperated with the Clans, the realization that their seat of power was under threat caused a sea change in thinking among the Order's leadership. In April 3051, Anastasius Focht negotiated with ilKhan Ulric Kerensky that a Trial be held on the planet Tukayyid between the forces of the Clans and the Com Guards. If the Clans won then Terra was theirs, but if ComStar won the Clans would agree to truce. The ilKhan agreed, setting the truce period to fifteen years, and the stage was set for the climax of the invasion.
Battle of TukayyidEdit
Unlike the other Clans which bid away vital forces to earn earlier landings, the Wolves held back and conservatively bid their most elite clusters of Alpha, Beta, and Gamma Galaxies, content to use the other Clans as stalking horses. Thanks to the direct insight and experience of Khan Natasha Kerensky and bondsman-turned-Clansman Phelan with Inner Sphere tactics, the Wolves prepared for a long campaign against a foe intelligent enough to take advantage of their weaknesses on a battlefield of his making, suspending all zellbrigen, making plans to build-up and protect their supply chain and configuring their OmniMechs with a heavy bias towards energy weapons.
Recognizing that Clan Wolf would be his hardest opponent, Precentor Martial Focht devoted his best troops to the battle, transferring the elite 278th to assist the 9th and 10th Armies, the 10th assigned to defend the primary target of Skupo with the 9th guarding the secondary city of Brzo. Further, with the Wolves landing last, Focht would also find that he could transfer troops slated to face other Clans after they withdrew in defeat, an ace-in-the-hole he hoped would go unused.
With the Clan Wolf DropShips grounding unopposed 40 kilometers south-east from both target cities, the Wolves Third and Seventh Battle Clusters and Alpha Galaxy's Fourth Wolf Guards advanced shoulder to shoulder as if expecting to fight for every step towards the primary target city of Skupo. The Clan advance encountered the 278th and 166th Divisions outside of the small hamlet of Forest's End at the foothills of the Porozistu Mountains. While the 66th Division harried the Wolves' right flank and the inexperienced 283rd Division prevented the 4th Wolf Guards from encircling the 166th and 2787th positions, the Wolf Khans focused all their efforts on the primary defensive line, slowly pushing the 166th and 278th Divisions back.
But as the Com Guard divisions retreated towards Skupo under artillery cover, the Clan Wolf forces proved strangely hesitant to follow, the Tenth Army's CO Precentor Margo Koivu ordering recon patrols be stepped up as a precaution. The ComStar forces finally discovered why, with Khan Natasha Kerensky's 13th Wolf Guards launching a series sweeping attacks to try and completely bypass the 166th Division's section of the retreat. Desperately ordering the held in reserve 282nd Division to delay and push Kerensky's Wolf Spiders back to allow the rest of the retreating Com Guard forces to reach the target city, while battered the elite Wolf troops brutally tore the veteran division to shreds. While incredibly costly, the 282nd's sacrifice allowed the remaining divisions of the Tenth Army to fall back to their defensive positions outside Skupo.
However before the Tenth Army's divisions could dig in, nipping at their heels the Wolf forces resumed their attack. But while initially successful in breaking through the ComStar lines, the 13th Wolf Guards walked into an ambush as the entrenched 138th Division emerged from hidden positions on an apparently barren hilltop. While any other unit would have broken in the face of such a point-blank ambush, their sheer stubbornness allowed the Wolf Spiders to hold their ground until they succeeded in killing the 138th's CO Precentor Jernberg and forcing the devastated division back. With Precentor Martial Focht hurriedly ordering reinforcements from the Ninth Army's 198th and 247th Divisions to try and bolster the faltering Com Guard battle line, as the Wolf Spiders began to tear into the 166th Division, the morale of the Com Guard defenders began to suffer as the Wolves unceasing assault ran roughshod over them.
With the elite 278th Division now the sole ComStar unit left effectively combating the Clan Wolf forces, ilKhan Ulric Kerensky ordered Delta Galaxy's 11th Wolf Guards to eliminate the troublesome unit. Despite a brilliantly coordinated counter-attack against the 11th, the Com Guard division then found itself encircled by another Wolf Cluster. Unable to break the trap, the 278th went down fighting, inflicting heavy losses on their attackers. Now lacking the forces to hold Skupo after the loss of the 278th, Precentor Martial Focht ordered the withdrawal of the remaining 66th and 208th Divisions defending it to try and save them from succumbing to the Clan forces, Clan Wolf cautiously advancing to avoid any further ComStar traps before taking Skupo unopposed.
Leaving several clusters from their Gamma Galaxy to protect Skupo before the bulk of their forces made way to Brzo, the Wolves Alpha Galaxy engaged the remaining divisions of the Tenth Army that guarded the approaches to the city while Beta Galaxy fended off reinforcements from the Ninth Army's 366th and 379th Divisions. As the Com Guard lines began to weaken, the withdrawal of Clan Jade Falcon allowed Precentor Martial Focht to transfer the Eleventh and Thirteenth Armies to the fight against the Wolves, with the divisions of the Eleventh dropping in the fringes of Brzo to reinforce the defenses. Pulling back in the face of three full Armies, the Wolves focused on capturing Com Guard depots and securing their own supply lines before advancing, only for the divisions of the Eleventh Army to launch an all-out attack against Beta Galaxy in the Pozoristu Mountains.
But under cover of a fierce storm, Natasha Kerensky's Wolf Spiders led the remaining clusters of Alpha and Beta in quietly breaching the Com Guard lines in an attempt to bypass nine divisions. While the Precentor Martial spotted the Wolves advance and sent to 39th and 222nd Divisions to separate and stall the Wolf Spiders until the divisions of the ad-hoc Thirteenth Army to could arrive, Phelan's Ax Star instead held the 222nd trapped until the arrival of their fellows. In the midst of this bloody battle, senior Khan Garth Radick was killed, with the Eleventh Army pushing the advantage and forcing the shocked Wolf warriors into retreat. However the blow to the Wolves morale was short lived, with Kerensky's 13th Wolf Guards crushing the remains of the 222nd and capturing Brzo for Clan Wolf.
While poor deployment by Com Guard forces allowed the Ghost Bears to earn a marginal victory and the savagery of the Jade Falcons allowed them to extract a draw, Clan Wolf comprehensively defeated ComStar at every turn, even when facing four full Armies. In many respects it would be Clan Wolf's greatest hour, but would bring disastrous consequences. Mirroring the Clans as a whole, the divide between Wolves Warden and Crusader factions only increased in intensity after Tukayyid, eventually resulting in the Refusal War and the sundering of the Clan into separate Crusader and Warden halves.
In 3057, Clan Jade Falcon sought to remove Ulric and continue the invasion. When the Council tried Ulric for treason and voted him out of office, Clan Wolf all but destroyed itself in preventing the Jade Falcons from breaking the truce by instigating a Trial of Refusal on a scale never before seen outside of a Trial of Annihilation. This particular Trial of Refusal would be forever referred to as the "Refusal War" against the Jade Falcons.
To ensure the Clan's survival, Ulric ordered Phelan Kell (then known as Phelan Ward) to take a contingent of warriors and a cross-section of the other castes to the Inner Sphere while he and Khan Natasha Kerensky sought to break the Falcons. Eventually, the Falcons were victorious, but they could not touch the part of the Wolf Clan that left Clan-controlled space and went into self-imposed exile to the Inner Sphere. This Clan Wolf-in-Exile would eventually settle on planet Arc-Royal in the Lyran Alliance and guarded the border against any Clan incursions.
Clan Jade WolfEdit
In an attempt to both destroy a hated enemy and win himself enough political prestige to potentially win the next ilKhan election, the Jade Falcon saKhan Vandervahn Chistu made the claim that the Refusal War had been a Trial of Absorption and that all remaining Wolf Clan assets were now Jade Falcons, at the same time Abjuring those who had fled with Phelan Kell. However saKhan Chistu had not counted on the survival of Star Captain Vlad, who had borne witness to the treacherous ambush which killed Ulric Kerensky. As the only member of Clan Wolf who had not either fled to the Inner Sphere or accepted the absorption and with evidence against Chistu, Vlad was in a position to challenge his claim of an Absorption, but only with the help of the Jade Falcon Khan Elias Crichell. The senior Khan agreed to help Vlad and in the Trial of Refusal which followed Vlad succeeded in killing Chistu, thereby rendering the Absorption null and void.
Khan Crichell upheld part of the bargain by granting Vlad the Ward Bloodname, but instead of fully reforming Clan Wolf he created instead Clan Jade Wolf, made up of all captured Wolf warriors who had been "absorbed" into the Jade Falcons. Vlad was furious with this deception at first but bided his time instead, winning the position of Khan for this new Clan. When the Grand Council convened to elect a new ilKhan Elias Crichell won the vote as expected, but what came next surprised everyone. Khan Ward immediately challenged Crichell as being unfit for command and in the Trial that commenced slew him. With the Jade Falcon Khan dead at his feet Vlad Ward declared that the Jade Wolves were "reborn" as Clan Wolf, a technically new Clan with none of the taint of the pre-Refusal War Wolves.
Wars of ReavingEdit
In the 3070's, the tensions between Home and Invasion Clans were growing. This was evident by the Snake Alliance's decision to elect Mandrill Khan Garrett Sainze as ilKhan and Brett Andrews succession of him. Wolf Khan Vlad Ward noted how much the debacle and decisions among the clans and Grand Council were a joke. He would even mock both ilKhan Andrews and the Council after discussing the matters that have been plaguing both clans. Furious, ilKhan Andrews attempted to vote to Annihilate the Wolves for their lack of honor and taint, but instead this would demoted to an Abjuration by the Grand Council, leaving the Wolves to become abjured from Clan Space. 
During the clan civil war in the mid 3070s, the now-abjured Clan Wolf would launch a daring raid on the Kerensky Blood Chapel. The goal was to capture the legacy of the Kerensky and destroy every bit of it from physical material to copies. The Wolves would also offer a batchall to the rest of the other clans to "snatch Kerensky's legacy from the Wolf's jaws to prove themselves worthy of it". The fighting lasted for days until Clan Wolf detonated the Kerensky Blood Chapel. Upon the aftermath of the war and creation of the Council of Six, it would be revealed that Clan Wolf actually save the copies of genetic legacy of the Kerensky name. 
The Wolves found themselves facing a crisis of confidence in the early 3080s; the Clan needed to make a show of strength to intimidate their neighbors and project an attitude of strength, but the strength of the Wolf touman had been badly reduced by the Jihad. The Wolves had been using a mixture of confidence and skill to avoid challenges that would expose their weakness for almost fifteen years, but the Wolf touman mustered just sixty percent of the strength in 3081 that it had managed to field in 3067, and the Wolf occupation zone was now surrounded by enemies. Actions against Clan Hell's Horses in recent years had gone badly and with the sibko program decimated the Wolves were forced to accept more freeborn warriors into the touman while stripping second-line clusters of OmniMechs and advanced technology to keep the front line clusters in top form.
During the Dark Age Era, Clan Wolf decided to move out of their Occupation Zone and make a new one in Lyran territory. In New Years Day in 3142, this new occupation zone would be renamed into the Wolf Empire and would continue to envelop the inside of the Commonwealth. They have seen fierce fighting from both the Free Worlds League and the Lyrans. The Wolves, seeing an opportunity to reunify Clan Wolf to their former glory, decided to cooperate with their exiled counterparts. They would offer the exiles a chance to "come home" through absorption as an alternative to being destroyed by other clans or being treated like bandits by the other clans. Some exiles decided to take the chance, while others did not.
HAMMERFALL was conceived by Archon Melissa Steiner as means to strengthen her House in face of multiple threats after the collapse of Republic of the Sphere and fall of HPG nets. The operation included a secret alliance with Clan Wolf to pass through Lyran space to occupy worlds on their border with the Free Worlds League League.
Also, it was designed to tie up political rival and opponent of her policies, Duke Vedet Brewster of Hesperus II by having him lead a military campaign into the old Free World League space. Trillian Steiner was sent to both Clan Wolf-In-Exile and Duke Vedet to pitch the operation.
The LCAF began bringing up regiments to staging bases along the Marik border between late 3136 and early 3137.
While taking heed of many of the teachings passed down by the Great Founder, Clan Wolf has been noted for their lack of formality and rigid adherence to tradition. The caste system is still present in Clan Wolf and the warriors still dominate, however personal freedom is a right of every member of the Clan, regardless of caste. Individuals are still expected to work for the greater good of their Clan and to follow the orders of their superiors, but they are allowed to express whatever views they may believe in any manner they choose.
Beyond their martial skills Wolf warriors tend to be highly adept politicians, wielding their words as skillfully as they would a weapon in combat. In this manner the Clan was able to lead the Warden faction and delay the invasion vote for many decades until fate finally intervened. The Wolf Clan is also noted for respecting technology as a means for achieving one's maximum potential, with the field of genetics the most highly respected due to its role in the eugenics program. As a rule most Wolves will refuse the use of cybernetics, seeing these devices as turning someone into something they are not, and will prefer the use of vat-grown cloned limbs to prosthetic limbs. The noted exception is the use of Enhanced Imaging by Crusader-minded warriors.
Clan Wolf also does not observe formal rituals beyond those common to all of the Clans, such as the Rite of Maturity held after a cadet's Trial of Position and the Ritual of Adoption. They trust that the upbringing their warriors receive is good enough and that no further loyalty tests are required. Historically each front-line Galaxy did maintain their own individual rituals, such as Alpha Galaxy's Wolf Rite, which set them apart from each other.
Since the rebirth of Clan Wolf under the leadership of Khan Vlad Ward, an effort has been made to destroy many traditions associated with the Warden faction in order to ensure the future dominate of the Crusaders. These include a more authoritarian stance with regards to the civilian castes, which has put a strain on the traditionally good relations between the castes.
The military successes of Clan Wolf have been attributable to a doctrine broken down into three stages. The first is acquiring accurate intelligence of your enemy: their willingness to study and analyze Inner Sphere fighting styles early in during the Clan Invasion allowed Clan Wolf to better plan their attacks and so achieve success with fewer losses. The second is to ensure adequate preparation before undertaking a military campaign. The breakneck pace of the Wolf invasion, and indeed their success in the battle of Tukayyid, was thanks only due to the diligent work given over to logistics. Finally once battle commenced a commander has to be willing to take calculated risks, as often this could be the determining factor in winning or losing a fight.
Just as they have been known as consummate politicians, so too were the Wolves particularly skilled in the batchall and the art of bidding. To the casual observer a Wolf warrior engaged in bidding appears to take on a carefree attitude as they bid away whole units, but in truth every Wolf warrior knows that the very outcome of the coming battle hangs in the balance during this phase and so bids accordingly. When necessary though the Wolf Clan's penchant for precision-low bidding was dispensed with, as occurred during the Clan invasion. If a world could be taken more quickly with a larger force then that was preferable to a more drawn-out confrontation which wasted resources.
For the same reason Clan Wolf historically had a very liberal attitude towards the traditional rules of engagement or zellbrigen. Though the other Clans may call into question the honorable nature of some of their tactics, to Clan Wolf they adhered to the Great Founder's teachings of conserving resources; what's more this flexible mindset was responsible for their tremendous success. For example it was Clan Wolf which pioneered the use of Headhunter units for infiltrating the enemy's rear area to decapitate their command structure. However under the leadership of Khan Vlad Ward the Clan as a whole took on more conservative views regarding zellbrigen.
Similar to the egalitarian nature of inter-caste relations in Clan Wolf, the relationship between trueborn and freeborn warriors has historically shifted from mere mild contempt to friendly competition. Despite Khan Vlad Ward's known hatred for freeborns, he too has been forced to rely on these "freebirths" to fill out his depleted touman. Likewise bondsmen were readily allowed to prove their worth to the Clan and adopted wholeheartedly, a practice which continues under Vlad's leadership.
Traditionally each front-line Galaxy in the Clan performed their own rituals for new and current members. Following the reformation of Clan Wolf Vlad Ward has put an end these practices, part of an effort to ensure the domination of the Crusader faction within the Clan.
- Garth Radick (???? - 3051)
|Kerensky, A||Kerensky, N||Kisiel||Lager||Levy|
|Waters||Winson, Jen||Winson, Jer|
|Exclusive Bloodnames Post-Operation REVIVAL:|
|General||MechWarriors||Elementals||Aerospace Pilots||ProtoMech Pilots|
|Exclusive Bloodnames Post-Wars of Reaving:|
|General||MechWarriors||Elementals||Aerospace Pilots||ProtoMech Pilots|
| Shared Bloodnames Post-Wars of Reaving:|
(Column titles signify the other Clans with which the Bloodnames are shared)
|Diamond Shark||Ghost Bear Dominion||Hell's Horses||Snow Raven||Jade Falcon|
- # This signifies a former Clan Widowmaker Bloodname
- * This signifies a Bloodname with a Bloodcount of five or less active Bloodrights
Before their eventual sundering, Clan Wolf has gained a respectable amount of attention. Their status as "Guardians of Kerensky's Legacy" alone has given them a good amount of allies and enemies. Clan Coyote was a true ally of the original Clan Wolf, given the close relationship between Coyote Founding Khan Dana Kufahl and Wolf Instructor Andery Kerensky, as well as their Warden philosophies. Another notable ally of Clan Wolf is Clan Goliath Scorpion. After the death of ilKhan Nicholas Kerensky at the hands of the Widowmaker Clan and Cal Jorgensonn, the Goliath Scorpions would assist the rest of the Wolves in defeating the Widowmakers. While the Wolf Khan, Jerome Winson, was initially furious by the Scorpion's interference, the Khan thanked them and gave them the Widowmaker's homeworld as a reward after hearing their story about fulfilling Nicholas' surkairede to him. The Hell's Horses also maintain good relations with the Wolves.
Of course, their coveted status has also given the Wolves envious foes. The Ice Hellions disliked the Wolves to such an extent that they even named one of their own Mechs to insult them before it was captured and renamed. The most notable rivals of the Wolves are Clan Jade Falcon and Clan Smoke Jaguar. The Jaguar's feud with the Wolves would stem before Operation Revival and their Warden views. When Leo Showers was elected as ilKhan, he would punish the Wolves by forcing them to participate in the Crusader-led assault. Clan Wolf's success during the invasion made the Jaguars so furious, that they plotted with other Clans to sabotage their efforts and use them as scapegoats. The Jaguars would even grow angrier when their plan to make Ulric Kerensky an ilKhan backfired on them. The Falcons were angry that the ilKhan Nicholas Kerensky joined them and gave them his revered legacy to the clan. In addition, the Wolf Clan's Warden philosophy and leadership were something that the Jade Falcons could not stand. They would finally get their revenge on them during the Refusal War, splitting the once-mighty Clan into two factions.
After the events of the Refusal War, the Wolf Clan's relationships had changed after they became reformed Crusaders. The Goliath Scorpions and Hell's Horses still remain loyal to the clan despite the philosophical change. They have also gained a friend in Clan Jade Falcon, seeing them as potential allies with Marthe and Vlad working together to cause the Jaguar's destruction. The Coyote-Wolf relationship would sour due to the change of the reborn Wolf Clan. As with Clan Ice Hellion, they have found a new reason to hate the Wolves: their interference with Asa Taney's Home Clan Coalition and the Harvest Trials. The Ice Hellions swore vengeance upon Khan Ward and his Wolves for ruining their plans until their destruction in 3072.
Post-Reaving, Clan Coyote and Clan Wolf would server their ties due to the political ideologies and geographical alliances set up by the Home and Invader Clans. As such, the remaining Invading Clans are their only allies.
Historical Map GalleryEdit
- Official entry on Classic BattleTech's webpage
- Masters of War
- Field Manual: 3145, p. VII, "Wolf Empire" map
- Historical: Operation Klondike, p. 106
- Wolf Clan Sourcebook, p. 12
- The Clans: Warriors of Kerensky, p. 12-13
- Wolf Clan Sourcebook, p. 22
- The Clans: Warriors of Kerensky, p. 14
- Era Digest: Golden Century, p. 4
- Field Manual: Warden Clans, p. 103
- The Clans: Warriors of Kerensky, p. 16
- Era Digest: Golden Century, p. 5
- Wolf Clan Sourcebook, p. 23
- Field Manual: Crusader Clan, p. 135
- Field Manual: Warden Clans, p. 104
- Field Manual: Crusader Clan, p. 136
- Wolf Clan Sourcebook, p. 24
- The Clans: Warriors of Kerensky, p. 17
- Field Manual: Warden Clans, p. 107
- Wolf Clan Sourcebook, p. 25
- The Clans: Warriors of Kerensky, p. 18
- Wolf Clan Sourcebook, p. 26
- Wolf Clan Sourcebook, p. 27
- Wolf Clan Sourcebook, p. 27-29
- Wolf Clan Sourcebook, p. 31-32
- Wolf Clan Sourcebook, p. 33
- Wolf Clan Sourcebook, p. 35-37
- Wolf Clan Sourcebook, p. 39
- Clan Wolf Sourcebook, p. 41-42
- Clan Wolf Sourcebook, p. 43, 46
- Field Manual: Warden Clans, p. 152
- Field Manual: Crusader Clans, p. 157
- Jihad: Final Reckoning, p. 111 - "Clan Wolf"
- Field Manual: 3145, p. 148 - Wolf Empire founded Jan 1, 3142
- The Clans: Warriors of Kerensky, p. 97
- Field Manual: Crusader Clans, p. 141
- Field Manual: Warden Clans, p. 156
- Field Manual: Crusader Clans, p. 140
- Wolf Clan Sourcebook, p. 43
- Total Warfare, p. 274
- Field Manual: Warden Clans, p. 155
- Historical: Operation Klondike, p. 37 - "Origins of the Bloodnames: The Clans' Founders
- Field Manual: Crusader Clans, p. 90, "Exclusive Clan Wolf Bloodnames"
- Wars of Reaving, p. 195, "Bloodnames of the Council of Six Clans"
- A Bonfire of Worlds
- Blood Legacy
- Clan Wolf Today, Wizkids Games (accessed November 9, 2007, link is for a copy held at the Internet Archive)
- Field Manual: 3145
- Field Manual: Crusader Clans
- Field Manual: Update
- Fire at Will (novel)
- Ghost War (novel)
- Grave Covenant (novel)
- Jihad: Final Reckoning
- Jihad Hot Spots: 3070
- Lethal Heritage (novel)
- Lost Destiny (novel)
- Malicious Intent (novel)
- Masters of War (novel)
- MechWarrior 2: 31st Century Combat
- Natural Selection (novel)
- Prince of Havoc (novel)
- Roar of Honor (novel)
- The Scorpion Jar (novel)
- Wolf Clan Sourcebook