"Close with the enemy."
- Commander John Geary's final transmission in the Battle of Grendel
Admiral John Geary, nicknamed "Black Jack", is an Alliance Fleet Admiral and Commander of the Alliance First Fleet. Nearly 100 years prior to the events of the Lost Fleet, at the beginning of the Alliance-Syndicate War, he seemingly sacrificed himself and made a last stand suicide mission against a large Syndicate Fleet. Thought dead, he was actually in suspened animation in a survival pod orbiting the star.
He was found nearly 100 years later, after the Alliance fleet detected an energy reading from his pod, while the fleet was en route on a risky attack to the Syndic Home System, where the fleet was trapped and the previous commander was killed. Geary, techincally the most senior captain in the fleet, assumed command of the fleet and led it on a desperate journey home.
Eventually after severely damaging the Syndicate's military, he attacked the Syndicate homeworld, forcing an end to the war and watching a revolution on Prime. Afterward, with the Syndicate threat dealt with, he married his fellow commanding officer Tanya Desjani and, along with the Alliance First Fleet, journeyed "beyond the frontier", into enigma territory.
His early life is largely unknown. He had a brother who did not join the fleet. During training, Geary was unremarkable, drawing little attention to himself. He did meet a particularly friendly chief  who was a good teacher (and also a good drinker). Many of the words of wisdom that the chief gave to Geary would come in handy when Geary was trapped in Syndicate space.
Geary was described by himself as "nerdy" and very few people paid him any attention, though he had many friends and his subordinates were loyal to him. Geary had no sexual/romantic relationships prior to the Battle of Grendel, although he did fancy one girl when he first began serving on ships.
Geary was just as brave in his past as he was during the long retreat. He earned himself the rank of "Commander" and his first command, the Merlon. Shortly after receiving the Merlon, he was given orders to escort two courier ships through the Grendel system.
Battle of GrendelEdit
While Geary was escorting the ships, a Syndic fleet jumped into Grendel, hoping to invade. Geary was involved in the Battle of Grendel, the opening battle of the Alliance-Syndicate War. During this battle, the crew of the Merlon, led by Geary, fought the vastly superior flotilla whilst the courier ships escaped.
However, the Syndic ships managed to heavily damage the Merlon. Geary ordered his own crew to evacuate. During the evacuation, Geary's Executive Officer refused to leave him, telling him she was necessary. After a lot of persuasion, she eventually left.
The Merlon continued to take damage. Her propulsion system was destroyed, launching the wreckage through space and her life support failed, leading to a buildup of fumes inside the Merlon. Geary, though sad to leave her, fled aboard a damaged escape pod. The Merlon self desructed, destroying most of the remaining Syndic ships.
The pods propulsion and communication systems had been knocked out during the battle, and Geary was placed into a medically-induced coma to keep him alive until help came in the form of an Alliance warship. However, Alliance warships could not communicate with the pod and Geary was lost, presumed to have died on the Merlon when it exploded.
Whilst he slept, Geary was transformed by the Alliance governemnt into a hero, in order to inspire the military and general public into continuing the war effort. The war was going badly, though the Alliance continued to broadcast that they were always on the verge of total victory against the Syndics.
After a Syndic traitor delivered the Syndicate hypernet key to the Alliance, the Alliance fleet moved back through Grendel to infiltrate Syndicate space. During this voyage, they encountered Geary's damaged pod leaking energy.
Geary was revived by medics onboard Dauntless. When he awoke, Geary was surprised and distressed to find that his crew were all dead, and that he had slept cryogenically frozen for 100 years.
For the next few weeks, Geary remained depressed and refused to leave his stateroom. He also didn't look up the ultimate fates of his crew, most of whom had been killed later on in the Alliance-Syndicate War.
First Battle of PrimeEdit
Geary did not learn of the significance of Dauntless' mission for some time. Meant to be the final, decisive blow against the Syndics- by using their own hypernet to bypass their defences and strike at their capital, Prime- the attack failed when the entire plan turned out to be a trap orchestrated by Syndic intelligence.
Admiral Bloch, commander of the Alliance fleet, ordered that the Alliance try to break through the wall of Syndic defenders. This plan succeeded, though the cost was great as Alliance warhips were mauled by Syndic defenders.
Eventually, the Alliance warships managed to fight their way through the trap, though they were now too far away from the hypernet gate. The Syndics reformed, changing their plan to simply cutting off the Alliance's retreat. Conceding defeat, Bloch surrendered and went onboard the Syndic warships to negotiate. Before he went, he left Geary in charge, who only accepted because he had to follow orders.
Bloch was executed by the Syndics, who demanded that the Alliance ships hand themselves over as prisoners of war within one hour. Geary, left in charge, was forced to overcome his depression and unite the fleet before they could surrender to the Syndics.
At a turbulent fleet conference- where Captain Numos, a senior battleship commander, attempted to force Geary to resign- Geary fought to unite the fleet. Eventually, with the help of Commander Cresida, Geary came up with a plan to flee to the nearest system, Corvus, and use jump points to return to Alliance space. Predictably, Numos and his closest supporter, Captain Faresa, were against this plan.
However, Geary was able to position his ships so that the slowest were closest to the jump point. He did this under the guise of preparing for another attack on the Syndics; however, Geary's ships began to charge towards the jump point. However, Titan, a slow but vital support ship, was falling behind the rest of the formation as she had taken damage. As Syndic Hunter-Killer swarmed in, Geary's grandnephew, whom Geary had only just met, fell back to cover Titan's retreat aboard his ship Repulse. Though Geary escaped, Repulse was destroyed. Even now, the fate of Commander Michael Geary remains unknown.
Training the FleetEdit
Pardon me for being blunt, but how can they be so damned stupid?
Geary to Duellos, on the Alliance fleet
At the Battle of Corvus, Geary found that the fleet were disorganised when a group of escorts he set for Titan abandoned her for a chance to attack a nearby corvette. This left Titan and the auxiliaries open to an attack by an extremely fast ship that was hoping to destory the supply ships vital for the fleet to make it home.
Geary was eventually forced to use Dauntless to destory the enemy ship, and, though he was impressed by Desjani's ease when taking the enemy cruiser out, he was still angry that the escorts had abandoned Titan. Geary also found issue with the fleet when they attempted to murder Syndics aboard a surrendered ship. At the same time, Geary had to deal with Arrogant bombarding a Syndic base on Corvus which the marines were in the process of capturing.
Geary faced a number of problems. Continued power struggles within the fleet now used Geary's refusal to execute prisoners as an excuse to spread hate about Geary. Furthermore, after Co-President Victoria Rione, a representative from the Callas Republic and the Rift Federation in the fleet, negotiated tribute from the Syndics in Corvus, they attempted to destroy the Alliance fleet by self-destructing merchant ships within range of the fleet.
After looting all the supplies they could carry or need, Geary ordered the fleet to Kaliban. This was another unpopular move, as Kaliban faced away from Alliance territory. The fleet would have prefered to go to Yuon, which Geary believed would be heavily defended.
On the way to Kaliban, a small Sydnic force arrived from Prime, having been sent by Shalin to slow down the fleet. Though he seriously outnumbered the Syndic force, Geary chose not to attack because he believed that a larger Syndic force would soon follow up the first and Geary would be at a disadvantage. He therefore chose not to fight the enemy force, which again angered the commanders, who believed that Geary was being cowardly.
Arriving in Kaliban, Geary earned some support when he informed the fleet that they would remain in Kaliban until they had enough supplies. Though this was a popular move, geary understood just how close to a mutiny he was, believing that if he was forced to go back on that promise, the fleet would desert him.
Knowing that to win the support of the fleet, he had to win the battle he knew would commence soon, Geary spent time training with his commanders with virtual battles, whilst the supply ships restocked. This arrangement lasted for a week, until the arrival of a Syndic pursuit force.
Forced into fighting, Geary employed the increasing discipline in the fleet to use a new tactic. Employing his larger numbers, he hit the Syndics on many fronts at once, causing their formation to break apart. The fleet were once again disillusioned by the victory, which had been won using strange tactics. However, because of his victory at Kaliban, the fleet did not mutiny.
Geary then ordered the fleet to advance to Sutrah.
Over the following weeks, Geary began to lose control over certain members of the fleet. At the Battle of Sutrah, a group of 4 warships disobeyed Geary's commands, leading to a reckless charge against retreating ships. It turned out that these ships were laying mines, which destroyed the group.
The problem was compounded when a war hero, Captain Falco, was rescued from a Syndic prisoner of war camp. Falco (suffering Geary complex), was annoyed when Geary refused to relinquish command of the fleet. Falco later took control of the Warrior, by intimidating its commanding officer, Captain Kerestes.
On the way to Strabo, Falco was in contact with Numos and Faresa. Upon arrival in Strabo, several Alliance warships- led by Warrior, Orion and Majestic- broke ranks and started to leave the main body of the Alliance fleet. Though Geary tried to bring them back, the ships left for Vidha, believing that Falco would lead them to a great victory. Geary sent one final message before they left for Vidha, telling them that if they were defeated, they should head to Ilion.
Battle of SancereEdit
Geary was aware that, with a fifth of his fleet gone, his position as commanding officer was unstable. He decided to attack the Syndic spaceport of Sancere for many reasons- to gain the trust of the remaining commanders, to destroy a valuable system and because the system had a hypernet gate, which would allow the fleet to escape back to Alliance space.
The decision to go to Sancere ruined his relationship with Rione, who believed that Geary had betrayed her by secretly planning to lead a "heroic attack." Rione refused to talk to him because of this decision. Geary now faced the difficulty of knowing that the Rift Navy and Callas Republic Navy might desert him as well under her orders.
Arriving in Sancere, Geary found out that the destruction of a hypernet gate (never before attempted) could give out a huge amount of damage. Commander Cresida theorised that taking out various tethers in the hypernet gate could affect the amount of energy given out, and created a system that could safely destroy a hypernet gate. She also created a system to maximise destruction from a gate.
The Battle in Sancere began with a Task Force of 30 ships, led by Cresida, attempting to draw the defenders of the hypernet gate out of position by bombarding various areas in the system and fighting the Syndic fleet. Cresida failed, however, to draw out the defenders, and Geary ordered the fleet to advance towards the gate. The defenders panicked, attacking the hypernet gate.
Recognising the extreme danger, Geary, on Dauntless, ordered Dauntless, Daring and Diamond to try and stabilise the gate. This plan did not succeed, but by using Cresida's plan, they were able to safely destroy the gate.
The fleet restocked and then destroyed the Syndic defences in the area, before moving on towards Ilion. Rione finally saw that Geary could be trusted. The pair of them then realised that they were attracted to each other, and had sex.
More issues within the fleet were raised about Geary's relationship with a politiician, and over the destruction of the hypernet gate. Captains Kila and Caligo began spreading rumours (secretly) that Geary had destroyed the gate on purpose to keep the fleet from getting home, so that he could retain control over it. However, Geary's bold attack and brave attempts to stabilise the gate earned him the respect of many, and opinion began to turn against those who wanted a change of command. The Battle of Sancere brought some stability to Geary's command.
Arriving at Ilion, Geary chose to wait for the mutineers, whom he felt sure had been defeated during the Battle of Vidha. During the wait, he promoted Commander Cresida to Captain and awarded her the Silver Nebula for her research on hypernet gates and performance at the Battle of Sancere.
During this wait, Cresida and her task force now came up with a new plan, called Operation Barricade. After the mutineers would arrive- with Syndic pursuit chasing them- Task Force Furious would mine the jump point with a dense minefield, using the rescources that the fleet had taken from Sancere.
The mutineers arrived, led by Warrior, Orion and Majestic. Geary ordered the immediate arreasts of their commanding officers (Kerestes, Numos and Faresa) and of Captain Falco. The remainder of the ships that had gone with the mutineers were heavily damaged. Unlike Warrior, Majestic and Orion, the other mutineers fell back to help the incredibly damaged Invincible, despite the fact that they were leaving themselves in the middle of the battlefield, without the protection of the rest of the fleet. Some even tried to join the Alliance's battle lines, though Geary told them to move to the safety of the rear of the fleet.
Meanwhile, Cresida led the dangerous attempts to mine the jump point, despite knowing that the enemy might jump in at any second. Cresida finished mining the jump point and made it to safety just moments before the Syndic forces jumped in, damaging the enemy ships and destroying most of them.
During the battle, Invincible and the mutineers escorting her were forced to go slowly, though they were still pursued by the Syndics. A second wave jumped in, and Geary's troops encircled and destroyed them.
At a resulting fleet conference, Kerestes, Numos and Faresa were all arrested prior to a court martialling. However, it was apparent that Falco- who had been suffering from mental conditions that had worsened in the labour camp- had gone completely insane after seeing his defeat at the Battle of Vidha. Still believing himself in charge of the fleet, he was consigned to medical, who humoured him by providing him with a virtul fleet display that he could use. The other mutineers were let off with a warning, though Duellos told Geary that many could still be angry with Geary, and some remained a member of the Kila-Caligo Conspiracy.
Enigma race theoriesEdit
Theories about the hypothetical alien race began to increase as Geary and his companions discovered new evidence about them. Following on from a stolen Syndic report on the use of strange tools to break into a Syndic vault, Geary began to suspect that the alien race could also be engineering the war between the Alliance and the Syndicate Worlds.
Geary also discovered some shocking evidence that the enigma race had in fact introduced the hypernet gate technology to humanity 70 years earlier. The war effort forced the two enemies to construct the gates to gain an economic advantage. Geary began to believe that the enigma race were planning on destroying the hypernet gates when a certain number of them were built, wiping out humanity.
A risky planEdit
Geary now planned to make a risky charge straight for Alliance space, believing that the Syndics were adapting to his plan of a cautious journey around Syndic territory. Though Geary claimed this was because he believed that it was possible to trick the Syndics, he may have had other reasons- the fleet remained divided as the faction that had once supported Numos now supported Commander Yin and Captain Casia for taking over from Geary. Geary may have made the charge to unite the fleet and persuade his enemies, such as Captain Armus that he was capable to lead the fleet.
However, other commanders, such as Duellos and Cresida did not share Armus' confidence in the plan, believing that Geary was trying to appease his enemies in the fleet to prevent another mutiny. Meanwhile, Desjani remained loyal to Geary in her trust to him.
At the Battle of Daiquon, the Alliance were ambushed by a group of Syndicate warships waiting by the jump point, though thanks to the casualties sustained by the Syndic fleet, and the extreme number of systems needing defending, the Syndics could not adequately defend Daiquon.
Though casualties were high, Geary was able to defeat the Syndics. The transit to Ixion was delayed by repairs to Brilliant, which had been damaged in the battle.
Geary talked to Rione after the battle, and she revealed that her husband- believed dead in the war- was actually alive, in a Syndic POW camp. She felt angry and distraught because she had had sex with Geary whilst her partner was still alive. However, because she hadn't told Geary about this, Desjani (who had found out about Rione's husband whilst reading Alliance Intelligence files) believed that Rione was dishonouring Geary, and the two women began arguing and fighting frequently.
Rione became depressed, losing control and binge drinking. She began to stop coming to the bridge to advise Geary during operations and began to ignore even the captains of her own ships. This caused morale problems in the Rift navy and Callas fleet. Eventually, Geary snapped and acted rude and unsympathetic to Rione, forcing her to realize she was acting unreasonably.
Geary also faced constant threat from Casia and Yin, who were now attempting to debate with Geary about every little thing. Geary then went to Ixion, as per his plan, where they were ambushed, though due to poor manoeuvring, the Syndic fleet was quickly destroyed when the formations collided with each other.
Rione remained worried by the ease with which they were travelling through Syndic space, and Geary began to realise that the Syndics were once again adapting to whatever he did. Knowing he had to do something uncharacteristic, Geary asked the insane Captain Falco for what to do. Falco believed that the best option was to head to Lakota, where Geary could access the hypernet gate and escape. Geary agreed with this, choosing to head to Lakota.
This caused issues with Rione, who though that Geary was being overconfident and couldn't rely on Falco's assessment. However, she admitted she could no longer command the Callas Republic ships and Rift Navy to abandon the Alliance fleet because they were divided by their loyalty to their home and their loyalty to Geary. This was the ultimate sign that Geary was becoming trusted, though Geary was quite upset that people were willing to betray their government for him.
Captain Badaya also offered Geary the power to take over from the Alliance government when he returned home, unsettling him further
Battles of LakotaEdit
Upon arrival at Lakota, Geary at first believed that he had chosen the correct system to jump to yet again. However, after contact with the Syndics began, Syndic reinforcements began arriving, including a very large Syndic force that had been involved in a battle elsewhere.
Though Geary's tactics helped prevent the Syndics from dealing a massive amount to the fleet, Geary quickly realised that the fleet was becoming trapped, because the Syndics were either guarding the exits from the system or had mined them. Knowing that the Syndic commander wanted to trap them, Geary considered heading to Brandevin, but quickly realised that he would be unable to manuever around the mines without slowing enough for the Syndics to catch him. Therefore, he decided to return to Ixion.
As the fleet retreated, the Syndics attacked the fleet head on. The fleet were able to avoid the Syndics, forcing the Syndic commander to spread his forces out in a thin line. Geary was able to concentrate all of his remaining firepower on the centre of the enemy formation, killing the enemy commander and breaking through. The Syndics raced after Geary, trying to reach his fleet before they could get to the jump point back to Ixion. To prevent the Syndics from doing this, the Seventh Battleship Division, under the command of Captain Mosko, fell back and held the Syndics off whilst the Alliance fleet escaped. The Battleships were destroyed, reminding Geary of how his grand nephew had died at Prime.
The Alliance fleet continued towards the jump point. Just as they arrived, the Syndic formation that had been persuing them at Ixion now came through the jump point and began fighting the Alliance formation. The Alliance fleet jumped back to Ixion.
During the jump back to Ixion, Geary fell into depression because of the vast number of ships that had been destroyed during the First Battle of Lakota. This depression was so severe that he was unable to work out a plan for how to escape the Syndics when they returned to Ixion. Though neither Rione nor Desjani were able to help Geary break out of his depression, Iger, an intelligence officer, was able to inspire Geary back into action when he told Geary that the large Syndic flotilla that had arrived and disrupted the Alliance fleet at Lakota, had in fact been intending to go to Andvari.
Iger believed that the reason for their arrival in Lakota had been down to the meddling of the enigma race, whom Geary believed built the hypernet gate.
Romantic Relationships: Edit
It was obvious to those close to him that Geary badly needed the comfort and support that a romantic partner could give him. Unfortunately the only person in the Fleet eligible for such a relationship was Victoria Rione, a political adviser who was not under his command in any way, and she was in every other respect a bad choice. Rione was a complicated woman with her own traumas and problems making her a challenge to any man but especially to a direct and straightforward character like Geary. She was a widow, still deeply committed to her dead husband, and not open to any but the most casual sexual relationship 'friends with benefits'. Geary on the other hand was a man seeking a permanent and committed partnership and distinctly uncomfortable with the idea of a casual romance. Despite the emotional mismatch the sex was good and for a while the relationship worked. The first blow was Rione's discovery that her husband might still be alive sending her into an emotional tailspin that Geary was hard pressed to cope with. Their sexual relationship continued for a while but Rione ended it when she realized Geary was in love with Tanya Desjani. While Geary regretted losing the sexual release he was also relieved to drop the dysfunctional romantic angle of his friendship with Rione which continued platonically to her death.
Tanya Desjani was in every way a more compatible partner for Geary, but she was also the Captain of his flagship making a physical relationship or even open acknowledgement of their feelings impossible. The romantic tension between them was finally resolved by a marriage shoehorned into the narrow span of time between Geary resigning his command of the Fleet and accepting the rank of Admiral of the Fleet. Regulations and honor required them to maintain a strictly professional relationship in spite of their marriage while aboard Dauntless but they could, and did, enjoy each other's platonic company and mutual confidence.
Fleets commanded by John Geary
- ↑ Unnamed