The Human Sphere is a BattleTech universe set in 3100. The Jihad has come and gone, leaving in its wake dozens of small realms in a perpetual cycle of raids and small wars. Will you seek money or defend your nation? Or both? You decide.
"The U.S. Constitution may not be perfect, but it's better than what we've got now." - Sandy Shaw
Clan Sea Fox
Clan Sea Fox is an odd animal, even in a group as strange as the Clans. The only Clan to be allowed to change their name, they became the Diamond Sharks after the Snow Ravens designed that animal to kill the Sea Fox. They are also the only Clan to be ruled by merchants instead of by the military, the Khan of this Clan has literally never personally fought in a battle. She is a merchant by training and lineage. A freeborn rather than a trueborn. And it was her actions in 3074 that caused Clan Diamond Shark once again to change its name to Clan Sea Fox.
They had lost contact with the Clan Homeworlds by that time, and she said that the days of the Clans were gone. That the days of their ability to change the fates of others was over, and that the days of their ability to affect her Clan were gone. She said that it was the weakness of the Clans that had made them Diamond Sharks, just like the weakness that had ended Clan power once and for all, and that to remain Diamond Shark would be to allow a legacy of weakness to maintain influence over them. That to return to the name Sea Fox would be a way of returning to what the Clans had been before the poison that would destroy them had been set.
The Clan agreed with her and became what we now know as Clan Sea Fox. Merchants that fly through the stars to bring their wares anywhere in known space, they have become the standard distribution system for thousands of companies. The Sea Foxes buy what the companies make at cut-rate prices, take it where it is wanted, and sell it for a profit. And of course they make and sell their own wares as well, from machines of war and trade like the massive Union-C all the way down to holovids that fit on a single datachip.
During their time in the Human Sphere they have remained uninvolved in wars for the most part, staying out of the Jihad in favor of shipping disaster relief to the worlds hurt by that war. The Word of Blake left them alone for the most part, though there was an incident with the Volga-class Bold Venture and her convoy at Coventry when a Word force suspected them of smuggling weapons. Unfortunately for the Word, the fleet disintegrated due to the efforts of Nashan spies and they were never able to prove their claims. The Sea Foxes similarly stayed out of the St. Ives War and the conflicts it spawned, and remained officially neutral in the Second Dominion-Combine War. For a time.
They officially censured the commander of the Bold Venture when he took his convoy into the war on the side of the Nova Cats and the Dominion, but did nothing to stop him. When the Combine assaulted Itabaiana in retaliation for the Bold Venture’s involvement, their Predatar Galaxy and Beta Naval Star quickly jumped into action to push back the Combine. With their help, the Nova Cats secured their freedom from the Combine, and the Sea Foxes returned to their natural neutrality.
For a time the Combine declared an unofficial war with the Foxes, naming them Kusemono (thieves) and unwelcome in the Combine. The Foxes responded by simply not entering the diminished Combine, and announcing publicly that they would not ship the products of companies that dealt with the Combine, or deal with other traders that did so. In less than a year any product made in the Combine stopped moving in the greater merchant community outside its territory and the nation was on the edge of economic collapse. Coordinator Ricol finally welcomed them to trade in his nation and publicly removed the Kusemono label from them, ending that standoff.
The Sea Foxes have been happy to trade there since, though the Bold Venture has never entered Combine space again, and no nation has attempted to replicate the Combine’s actions since. The Sea Foxes trade freely with anybody and everybody, selling anything for a profit and buying anything they can get a profit from. They stop short of slavery and other such trades, but they do market pornography and Canopian Pleasure Circuses often fly as a part of a Sea Fox convoy. The Sea Foxes in fact welcome other merchants to fly as a part of their convoys, granting them protection from pirates in exchange for only nominal fees to pay for it.
Each convoy is built around a single old Star League WarShip, a behemoth compared to the smaller Sea Fox-class frigates and JumpShips that move with them, and all Sea Fox ships are painted in striking schemes and/or colors. The Bold Venture is bright red for example, while the Speculator is a deep green. The Poseidon is covered in pictures of the god it is named after, while the Kraken is painted up like a kraken of the deep. Every Sea Fox ship is painted to shout out its identity to all around it, making the arrival of a Sea Fox convoy in orbit something that throngs of crowds come out to see.
The commanders of each convoy answer only to the Khan on Twycross, and then usually only in theory. The Khan allows each convoy to perform as it sees fit, granting them self-rule unless their actions endanger the Clan at large. The Bold Venture, often called the Errant Venture by its detractors because of its captain’s inability to hold to a course and his constant run-ins with the law, has been called to task for its actions more than once but the commander continues to escape punishment by paying back those he cheats. When he is found out. Few believe he is caught every time of course, and the Bold Venture’s convoy has cultivated a reputation for welcoming misfits of all stripes. Perhaps it is this ability to attract misfits from other Sea Fox convoys so they don’t have to worry about them that has kept the Sea Foxes at large from permanently removing him.
Sea Fox Convoys can be seen throughout the Human Sphere, though they tend to be smaller the further out from Terra they move. Granted access to all other nations as long as they don’t foment trouble, they have become the most visible cog in the vast merchant network that keeps Terra’s far-flung colonies in contact, however sporadic, with each other. Without them and those like them, the Human Sphere of today would be a far different place.
While the Sea Fox navy still has a number of old Star League WarShips, most of their ships are the newer and smaller Sea Fox-class frigates. The larger Sea Fox convoys are built around an old Star League WarShip and surrounded by the smaller Sea Foxes that carry multiple DropShips of their own to perform defense or trade with.
Their Convoy Protection Forces are built around the Sea Fox-class frigates and armed Union-C and Sassanid DropShips, often carrying Ammon AeroSpace Fighters and the large Phoenix Hawk LAM IIC Land AirMech. It is the largest LAM ever built and is designed to look exactly like the standard Phoenix Hawk IIC in BattleMech mode. Used to board and destroy enemy DropShips from the inside, pirates have learned to fear a Clan Sea Fox convoy and few raid them now.
Like the Convoy Protection Forces, the Sea Fox Enclave Protection Forces are built around BattleMechs that they sell. Rarely does anyone see a BattleMech they don’t actively sell as the Sea Foxes believe it is best to show their customers what the weapons they are willing to sell can do so their customers will buy them. Oddly, the Sea Foxes field very few heavy BattleMechs, relying on their light assault ’Mechs, the Phoenix Hawk IIC and Warhammer IIC, to fill that roll.
Alpha Naval Star
Lola III-class Predator and Space Hunter
Nightlord-class Terror of the Deep
Sea Fox-class Sea Fox and Diamond Shark
Beta Naval Star
Essex-class Sharon and Tracy
Fredasa-class Swift Strike
Sea Fox-class Honored Kill
Convoy Core Elements
Carrack-class Star Diver (Bloodletter), Star Flyer (Devourer), and Star Swimmer
Potempkin-class Kraken, Poseidon, Red Tide, Titantic, and Tsunami
Sovetskii Soyuz-class Nagasawa
Volga-class Bold Venture and Speculator
Deathstrike Galaxy (Alpha)
Predator Galaxy (Beta)
Snapping Jaws Galaxy (Gamma)
Due to Clan Sea Foxes practice of rarely fighting in anything other than the units they sell to other nations, we don’t know what they produce outside of the weapons of war that they actively sell. This is the most complete product listing we have been able to compile. We do know they build Sea Fox-class frigates, but have never been able to track down where those are built.
Itabaiana – Ammon AeroSpace Fighter; Griffin IIC, Locust IIC, Mad Cat MK II, and Shadow Hawk IIC BattleMechs; Siren, Satyr, Roc, and Minotaur ProtoMechs; Union-C DropShip
Twycross – Phoenix Hawk LAM IIC Land AirMech, Ha Otoko, Jenner IIC, Phoenix Hawk IIC, Solitaire, and Warhammer IIC BattleMechs; Siren, Satyr, Roc, and Minotaur ProtoMechs; Sassanid DropShip
Though the Sea Foxes have permanent offices throughout the Human Sphere where they discuss business, such as those found on Outreach, the worlds that actually have large enclaves and defensive forces are comparatively rare. Most Sea Foxes grow up and live in deep space between trading ports, or in space stations seeded throughout known space. Only three worlds are completely held by the Clan, Itabaiana, Kooken’s Pleasure Pit, and Twycross, and it is there that what we assume to be the vast majority of their people live. Rumors suggest however that they have more deep space stations than we know about, perhaps enough to double their known population. Anything more than that is limited to baseless conjecture.
Bazaar – Jointly-held by ComStar and Clan Sea Fox, ComStar has defended this crossroads of trade in the Outer Rim since shortly after the Jihad, though the Sea Foxes do maintain numerous permanent trading stations on the planet, in orbit, and at the jump points.
Calloway VI – In the Oriente Protectorate, this is one of the few Spheroid systems to have a permanent Clan Sea Fox enclave. It has a permanent garrison, made up of the machines of war they sell, and houses several thousand Sea Fox traders, as well as their dependents. A very bright world that never sees the dark, much of the Sea Fox enclave is covered by a series of black tarps to shield the eyes of Sea Fox traders accustomed to the darkness of space.
Gwithian – A colony of Celtic ancestry occupied by the Diamond Sharks before the Jihad, ComStar took up formal protection of the system after that war. Clan Sea Fox continues to perform healthy trade with the small population, and has helped it to build up substantial local industries. The Sea Fox enclave on this world is small but self-sufficient.
Itabaiana – A resource-rich world, it is one of only a handful of Sea Fox-held worlds. Home to numerous factories that build the various designs they sell to other nations, it became a target of the Draconis Combine during their effort to subjugate the Nova Cats. The Sea Foxes did not take kindly to that.
Kooken’s Pleasure Pit – Built up by the Lyrans to be a planet for R&R, it sports a remarkably temperate climate and a wide variety of terrains. It is also home to a number of holostudios that produce everything from nature documentaries to pornographic vids that are sold throughout the Human Sphere. The Sea Foxes run a shuttle service to the Pleasure Pit for any interested traveler, allowing them to enter and leave Jade Falcon space without being stopped by the Falcons, and generate large amounts of money off that tourism. “What happens on Kooken stays on Kooken” is a commonly seen advertisement throughout known space.
Nouveaux Paris – This thriving system of two billion inhabitants is the home to yet another permanent Sea Fox enclave. The Sea Foxes have helped the world greatly by selling them high technology that has helped them return to space on their own power. The profits the Sea Foxes have netted from this operation have been significant.
Port Moseby – A crossroads of Rasalhague, Tamar, Skye, Lyran, and Azami shipping and people, Port Moseby is a place where you can find almost any luxury and almost any pleasure. The sprawling cities, major spaceports, and a steady traffic of JumpShips in and out of the system make it a particularly rich one, especially in the generally slower Federation of Skye. Lyran Merchant Princes and Clan Sea Fox traders both have a permanent presence in the system. Oddly, all parties have generally deemed it off limits for any raids and no major government has hit the planet in two decades.
Trondheim – This volcanic world centrally located in the coreward section of the Rasalhague Dominion is home to a Sea Fox trading station in high orbit that houses several thousand traders and their dependents.
Twycross – Orbiting a large hot sun, Twycross has a desert climate that is as volatile as it is hot. The perpetual windstorm call "Diablo" scours the ground on the Plains of Curtains to the Carswell Barrens. Great Typhoons, tornadoes and all manner of minor disturbances are so common that the reports of major cataclysms do little more than cause Twycross natives to shrug in indifference and carry on. In order to survive, the majority of the population is housed under ground. The few surface dwellers make their homes in low squatting buildings. The capital, Camora, is built both above and below ground, incorporated with its large spaceport. The numerous factories here build much of what the Clan sells to other nations, and the TwyJel that seals holes in spacecraft is grown in this system.