Here's an interesting thing: the UAS has issued no response to that massive battle. Nothing, not the first word. You would think in the time it took me to collate all the different reports into a narrative that could be understood fairly easily that they'd have had time to write up and issue some kind of statement themselves.
Not a bit of it. Though, by what I'm just sure is total coincidence, the AWOL troops from that UAS station finally made their move. They must have been monitoring the blog somehow, because as soon as I pointed out the scouts watching them, they stopped heading here. Then, weeks later, the UAS suffers a terrible beating (brought on, I'll add, because of their own greed) and what do you know? The AWOL soldiers begin to move toward us.
I won't create unneeded drama: they're all dead. Those soldiers were disavowed criminals. I reckon we did the UAS a favor in eliminating them. Call it a courtesy.
There was no doubt at all they were coming here. Our long-rage scouts were listening in on the group and knew every tactic they intended to use against us. Have to give them a little credit; they weren't just going to rush in blind and storm New Haven. They were going to play it fairly sneaky. Might have done some real damage, too, if they hadn't underestimated our will to proceed under threat to our well-being.
It's somewhat disturbing that the UAS hasn't said a word to us yet. By any measure you want to use, we have now moved from a cold war to full-on open conflict. There should be reports of pressure on the Union's western border, incursions happening here and there, something. Anything.
There isn't. It's not that I hope for that eventuality, but everyone in the decision-making process knew there would be consequences. The choice to attack wasn't much of one; we had to do something. But we were prepared for large-scale retribution pretty much instantly and that just hasn't happened.
It's hard to gauge the stress around here right now. Will is starting to carry that strained look with him all the time; tired lines around his mouth, the beginnings of crow's feet at his eyes, the barest threads of gray in his hair. He's quite a young man, but this job is aging him fast. Becky, I've hardly seen. She has become an indispensable part of the war effort, but that means she works about thirty hours a day and probably survives by sheer rugged determination. Pat is itching to get out and fight--still--but his desire to do damage seems inversely proportional to how many hands he has left. He wants to feel useful, and who doesn't, but he refuses to settle for the reality that he is very useful doing needed and critical work.
I remember the days when survival meant that sometimes every single person had to fight if they were able. Sometimes that's still the case, but we've been moving away from the forced generalization that kept us alive and toward specialization, which is building better tomorrows. It's hard to move from the fierce, vicious need to kill toward rational avoidance in the face of danger. Hell, I'm nearly wired against killing people these days, yet I still want to get out there and end the threat even knowing what it will do to me emotionally.
The UAS may be stalling until they can get forces in close. Might be they're waiting to see what happened to the AWOL soldiers. Could be a lot of things, but there can't be much doubt that we're in the thick of it now. For them to have any sort of authority in the future, to prove their actions moral and right, they'll have to address the destruction of their war party. No two ways about it. We're ready for anything. The death of the AWOL troops shows that. We won't be an easy kill.