Arrival (World in Peril)
A new alien threat has arrived at Earth. Initially thought to be a band of rogue Zentraedi it is learned that these new visitors pose a much greater threat.
<< Prelude | Invaders >>
While on patrol in the Tanami Desert southwest of Dundee Base, the 21st picks up fragments of a distress signal. The signal is coming from the Pine Gap communications facility and is being jammed. The 21st are on the outer edge of their patrol zone, and begin racing toward the facility at top speed. En route they encounter a group of vehicles escaping from the battle being pursued by Bioroids. It is the 21st's first encounter with the enemy and they a prolonged battle before finally defeating the Bioroids. The vehicles that were being pursued are carrying valuable information, copies of transmissions intercepted from the enemy. They believe the intercepted data is why Pine Gap was targeted. The 21st help get the intercepted data to safety at Dundee Base. When the transmissions are deciphered they identify the enemy as the Robotech Masters.
Military Intelligence is slow to share any information with the front line soldiers so a few members of the 21st head into Gibson and meet with Bungle Wally, the conspiracy nut, to see what his take on things is. It turns out that Wally has been using a manual telescope to take photographs of Earth orbit and has identified at least a dozen new large shapes, The 21st believes these are all massive capital ships, which means the enemy is a far greater threat than the government has been letting on.
With the Masters disrupting satellites, long-range communications becomes difficult or impossible. In part because of the jamming tactic used at Pine Gap, the Southern Cross begins the creation of OSEACOMNET (Oceania-Southeast Asia Communications Network). Crews race to lay thick lines of cable across Australia to link Darwin, Dundee Base, Fort Gibson, Perth, Alice Springs/Pine Gap, and Queensland. A sea cable is also being laid between Queensland Base and Port Moresby.
The 21st provides security for some of the teams laying the underground cable. They again come into conflict with Bioroids and fight them off. The squadron later files a detailed report of their observations on the enemy's capabilities. When a joint TAF/TASC assault on the Masters ship fails horribly with nearly the entire 1st attack wave wiped out the 21st realizes that their reports on the enemy capabilities were not released by High Command, meaning the assault wave was completely unprepared for the opposing forces.
Responding to the Southern Cross' attempted offensive the Robotech Masters send out several waves of Bioroids, with Australia being one of the areas targeted. The 21st battles one of the attack waves and Copycat is nearly killed. The squadron eventually defeats the Bioroids and manages to bring back some salvage, which the GMP immediately confiscates.
Days later while on patrol with the Boomers Destroid squadron the 21st again engages in combat with a unit of Bioroids. The enemy is driven off and the group manages to capture one of the disabled Soldier Bioroids relatively intact. Knowing the GMP will confiscate this one as well the 21st and the Boomers take the Bioroid back to Fort Gibson where Brains immediately begins examining it. They get about two hours worth of useful time to examine the Bioroid, and learn a lot about how it works, before the GMP arrive to take it away. For violating the standing order that all captured enemy material is to be handed over to the GMP immediately the entire 21st and the Boomers are thrown into the stockade at Fort Gibson.
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