| Century Centurions
The Century Centurions are one of the squadrons of the
Hollywood Knights, however are one of the more, let us say ragged and
"uncouth" of the Knight's squadrons. Sponsored by what many call
a "mid level" production company and manned by B grade actors and not even millionaires, it is
considered the Black Sheep of the Hollywood Militia's.
the Hollywood Knights were first formed, there were two squadrons, the
Metro Marauders sponsored by MGM and a second sponsored by Howard
Hughes Colossal Pictures. As time went on, several others were
formed with approval by the movie commission and Knight's leadership.
Republic Pictures moved into a prominant place in Hollywood and
sponsored a third squadron, and then a fourth and fifth were organized
by several other motion picture companies.
New Century Pictures
was once the up and coming company of Hollywood, however after fierce
competition, Republic Pictures pulled ahead out of the middle
tier, leaving Century behind. While it wasn't the cause, Century
council members believed that at least partially due to Republic
sponsoring their own squadron.
It took a great deal of
convincing and back room bribes, however Century for sponsorship.
Somewhat ironically, being a second line company, the squadron is
as well. The pilots are drawn from Century's
contracted actors, and regional celebrities rather than the big name
stars in some of the other lead squadrons.
were formed in 1933, formed to spearhead the 1934 "Re-occupation of
Hollywood territory". Many experts dispute whether that
conflict with Pacifica was retaking of Hollywood territory from
Pacifica or squashing a homegrown uprising.
1934 conflict came when a series of new business taxes and trade deals
were made, most of which favored the film industry, which was a large
money maker and the manufacturing industry, which the government was
trying to boosy to levels which would make the new nation almost
self-suffeciant in all manufactured goods from ammunition to aircraft
agricultural and mining and logging industry of Northern Hollywood saw
no extra benefits as given to those industries. Meanwhile, their
neighbors across the border in Pacifica were the bread and butter of
the Portland Government.
Thus, the locals didn't give much
thought as Pacifica air militias moved south to "Protect innocent
civilians against piracy, regardless of nationality", and quite often
in fact lodged the pilots and supplied them with fuel and supplies.
Hollywood moved north to drive off the Pacifica Air Militia's, there
was stiff resistance. While the details are still murky, it is
known that within a week, Pacifican reinforcements were arriving from
their northern regions and aircraft were being shipped to the region
brand new from the Boeing plant, while Hollywood tried to eliminate
Pacifican air power as it scraped up a ground force to take over the
conflict went back and forth for several months, slowly rising, then
dropping in intensity. In the end, Pacifica and Hollywood agreed
on a demilitarized zone, the area remaining under Hollywood control and
prohibiting Pacifican air militias, while allowing Hollywood "adequate
forces to control pirate predation".
the Centurions are stationed in Sacremento, near the rich rail and air
lines to Reno in the Disputed Territories. The Knights are not
the only militia Hollywood has, however is the elite and best equipped.
Thus while they don't usually pull normal patrol duty, they do
get into some of the thickest fighting in the region.
Pirate activity is high, raiding into Hollywood territory from
Pacifica, while avoiding Pacifica militia by ducking into the Disputed
Territories. That and flights from both Hollywood
and Pacifica "Accidentally" cross the disputed border regions whenever
action becomes slow.
Centurions logo is a Legionnaire helmet, with New Century's tradmark
splotlights with the somewhat ironic latin phrase "Namquam Denique"
which roughly translates to "Never Last", which seems a fitting phrase
for the squadron. While undoubtably skilled and well liked by
the public and fellow militia pilots, the phrase "Never Last" is well
fitting. Funded by a poverty row company, they aren't as well
equipped as the Metro Marauders. The pilots are
not the A-list celebrities. The fact that none of the pilots
hesitate to poke a jab at their more famous counterparts or the
Hollywood government, also help their black sheep image leading to
reputation as "Gray Knights". This has also led to their being
one of the most popular units on Hollywood's northern border.
only ten aircraft, the Centurions are similar to the other
Hollywood Knight squadrons by being slightly smaller than most nations
squadrons. Supposedly due to their higher skill.
Their aircraft are as unique as the pilots. The entirety of the
squadron is equipped with the rare Hughes Devastator MK IV.
a dozen were turned out of Hughes Aviation facilities before Devastator
production ceased. The MK IV's were in fact made to use up
remaining parts. Using the powerful Tornado G500, the
modified Devastator reaches a top speed of 300MPH. Of
course this had reduced the Devastator's legendary turning abilities.
This was compensated by adding a pair of hardpoints and replacing
the inner pair of .40 calibers with .50 caliber Barrets. This gives
them a speed nearly matching the newer interceptor aircraft, while
retaining the hitting power and armor of fighter-bombers.
This has proved a very usefull jack of all trades, with the
Centurions being the sole user of these aircraft, adding to the
mystique surrounding the squadron. As several were
destroyed or shot down, several MK III's were converted to MK IV specs.
Likewise, just recently the Centurions acquired a pair of
Bloodhawks and a single Firebrand to replace their oldest Devastators.
Centurion squadron numbers ten pilots and a single gunner.
Drake is one of Century's biggest actors, as well as pilot.
He is not the most-used actor in Hollywood, primarily because he
gains much of his popularity and appeal from his aerial exploits.
Tall, with a moustache and swaggering walk, many
have compared him to Loyle Crawford, a comparison that is despised by
Drake got his start piloting aircraft as a stunt pilot for
Colossal Pictures. After argument too many, he was fired
and then hired by Century, who saw his talent as a big money-maker,
within weeks appearing in several short films and then going on to lead
Piloting a stock Hughes Devastator, he
has passed on the several new Bloodhawks and Firebrands, surprising
many other pilots. When asked about his reasoning he gave
the reporters a sauve grin and said he was too partial to the nose art,
which is too scandalous to make it past even the more liberal censors
in Hollywood today.
Davis is a pilot through and through. Not in the movie
industry, like the rest of her squadron mates, she instead gained
notoriety only after saving the Centurion's leader (Drake) from a
pirate ambush over the DMZ, piloting a regional militia owned aircraft.
With that incident, she joined the Centurions by
invitation, and has moved up the ranks.
An attractice blonde,
she has turned down several offers to star in a movie, and has no
interest. She has become Drake's wingman after his previous one quit
the Centurions for a full time acting career. Her gunnery skills
lag, however she has an almost sixth sense when it comes to
anticipating an opposing pilots moves.
pilots one of the two new Bloodhawks in the unit, it's agility allowing
her to keep tight on the tail of an opposing fighter.
most known for an "incident" involving a gala held in Los Angeles.
While most of the Hollywood Knights were in attendance,
all were in their "shmoozing" attire of gowns, tuxedoes
and.....unarmed, including her squadron leader.
When she arrived in clean and pressed (but normal) jodhpurs and
riding boots and openly carrying her personally owned 1911 Colt .40
caliber, the doorman attempted to bar her entry. After an
altercation involving a broken nose and a compromise later of her
surrendering her weapon she was allowed in, although the incident raged
for weeks in the tabloids.