The southern hemisphere of Shintai is home to a fractured network of warring states whose roots were forged in the cataclysmic orbital battle that extinguished the light of spacefaring civilization in the Corvus system. Even as the last of the crippled dreadnoughts and starcruisers began their death ride into the upper atmosphere of Shintai, the first shots of a new war were already ringing out across the smoldering debris fields on the planetary surface below. All across the scattered mudflat steppes of Shintai's barren southern hemisphere, the bloodied survivors of the embattled fleets clambered out of their blackened escape capsules and reentry pods to continue with carbine and machine-pistol what had begun with hyperkinetic impact projectile and broadside missile barrage. But without any way of retaining coordinated command and control over the widely dispersed pockets of survivors, it was not long before the desperate struggle devolved into a barbarous and merciless slaughter, with roaming bands of survivors preying on former compatriots and comrades in pursuit of ever dwindling packages of emergency rations and supplies. Savage chaos reigned for ten years, as the starving remnants of the great fleets fought on foot over the scattered farmsteads and aquaculture plots of the sparsely populated southern hemisphere, much to the misfortune of the hapless colonists, many of whom fled north to their ancestral corporate heartlands, preferring to brave the terrors of the equatorial storms rather than endure any more suffering at the hands of the ravenous off-world hordes. But gradually a kind of order emerged from the bloody butchery of the south, as the strongest and hardest rose to the fore, planting their banners upon what they now saw as rightfully theirs.
Among the phoenixes to rise from the ashes was the Texacor Battalion. Spearheaded by the battle-hardened survivors of the only ICA Aerospace Marine Corps assault group to reach Shintai planetary surface with less than eighty percent casualties, the Texacor Battalion was able to rapidly consolidate a position of strength among the windswept crags and peaks of the Liang-Gao Archipelago. From their hilltop bunker strongholds and fortified trench lines, Texacoran combat teams were able to hold off countless waves of hostile Red remnants flying the banners of the old Combined People's Liberation Fleet despite the daunting threat of being outnumbered and outgunned. The fortuitous survival of colonial hydroponics infrastructure in the Archipelago enabled the Texacor Battalion to support the absorption of numerous desperate bands of their former compatriots from the ICA Joint Task Force. Within a decade, the Texacor Battalion was strong enough to launch punitive deep strike raids into the heartlands of Red remnant territory. By this time, however, the Texacor Battalion's attentions were diverted from the Red remnants as a potentially greater threat had materialized in the form of a vast conglomeration of ICA survivors united beneath the standard of the Fleet Commodore. Proclaiming himself the supreme emergency administrator of all legal and military prerogatives of the Interstellar Commerce Authority and enforcing his mandate to rule through an elite detachment of Joint Fleet IntelSec operatives, the Fleet Commodore impressed thousands of desperate ICA veterans into his self styled Provisional Interstellar Authority and demanded that the Texacor Battalion likewise submit and join, for the addition of such a wealth of arms, munitions, and agriculture would significantly strengthen the Fleet Commodore's hand in his ongoing campaigns against the Red remnants. However, the ruling junta of Texacoran officers refused the ultimatum, insisting that their hard-won stockpiles of priceless supplies were not to be wasted on a fruitless campaign of extermination against an already defeated enemy. Furthermore, the Texacoran junta challenged the legitimacy of the Fleet Commodore's claim to supreme military authority and command, as the ICA Joint Task Force had been so thoroughly decimated by the great orbital slaughter that it was impossible to account for a complete line of succession in which a mere cruiser squadron captain could rise to take the office of Fleet Commodore. With ultimatum rejected, the armies of the Fleet Commodore's Provisional Interstellar Authority swiftly encircled and besieged the holdings of the Texacor Battalion, but every assault was vigorously repelled time and again with heavy loss. As the cost of the simultaneous campaigns against the Texacor Battalion and the Red remnants steadily drained his armies of irreplaceable manpower and materiel, the Fleet Commodore was forced to suspend the repeated offensive thrusts against the Texacoran strongholds and call off the campaign entirely when a particularly severe seasonal storm cluster descended from the equator to devastate the southern hemisphere.
By the time the storms had cleared, the balance of power in the south had shifted in favor of the Red remnants, whose shock brigades now ranged freely once more across the flooded alluvial plains, diverting the attention of the Provisional Interstellar Authority. The Texacor Battalion had survived its most decisive trial and was thenceforth to remain a permanent and powerful presence in the heart of the south.
The illustration depicts a lieutenant colonel of the Texacor Battalion. Although the commissioned officer class of the Texacor Battalion is a hereditary aristocracy largely descended from the Battalion's founding cohort of ICA Marine and Task Force Fleet officers, battlefield casualties typically ensure that only the competent survive to command. In contrast, the ancient American Marine ethos of total meritocracy lives on among the Texacoran enlisted and noncom classes, who consist of volunteers drawn from the Texacoran occupied territories. The lieutenant colonel depicted is armed with an M11 Rifle Carbine of pre-Collapse vintage and a ceremonial Mameluke officer's sword of modern manufacture. The M12 helmet and M35 battle dress uniform are also of pre-Collapse vintage, though with modern modifications and additions including the rain cloak. Despite centuries of wear and heavy usage, the Texacor Battalion fields a substantial amount of pre-Collapse materiel and equipment due to careful repair and maintenance supplemented by salvage and recovery of pre-Collapse supply caches from surveyed interstellar wrecksites.