The Battle of Bhekar Ro took place on Bhekar Ro after the fall of Aiur and before the Brood War. The zerg Kulkulkan Brood and a protoss expeditionary force led by Executor Koronis converged on the world shortly after the discovery of a xel'naga artifact by the local terran colony of Free Haven. The colonists summoned aid from the Terran Dominion in the form of Alpha Squadron. The battle gave birth to an energy creature within the temple which subsequently absorbed the zerg and protoss while crippling Alpha Squadron before leaving the planet.
Free Haven contacted the Dominion after discovering the temple and when an observer acting as an advance scout for the protoss was shot down by the town's missile turret it seemed the colonists' caution had been well founded. The zerg arrived in behemoths ahead of the main protoss fleet and set about infesting the outskirts around the town. Early victims included the prospector Rastin, his dog Old Blue, and vespene geysers claimed by the prospector.
The protoss did not detect the zerg initially; believing they had arrived first they deployed troops, 20 Arbiters, and all but three carriers to the surface to secure the temple. The zerg presence was revealed when orbiting behemoths emerged from the night side in full view of the three orbiting carriers, including the flagship Qel'Ha. Many carriers returned to space to meet the new threat. Interceptors made short work of overlords and guardians, which were unwieldy in micro-gee vacuum. In response scourge destroyed one carrier and damaged another.
The fifteen battlecruisers of Alpha Squadron arrived after the battle was joined and entered the fray without hesitation, led by the flagship Norad III. The sudden arrival of the terrans threw the protoss and zerg into disarray. Yamato guns destroyed more overlords and two carriers, while cloaked Wraiths provided cover against scouts and mutalisks. The protoss regrouped and pushed forward five carriers toward the terrans hidden under the cloak of two Arbiters. The battlecruisers Bismarck and Napoleon advanced to "mop up" the Arbiters but were surprised when they were caught in stasis fields and heavily damaged by decloaked interceptors. Bismarck was crippled while Napoleon could do no more than limp away.
The zerg also began diverting attention to the terrans. Mutalisks and scourge inflicted heavy losses on Wraiths and Duke ordered his fleet to regroup. Two science vessels covered the withdrawal with EMP and defensive matrix while scanning for additional protoss ships.
Zerg Assault Free HavenEdit
Even before the arrival of the protoss fleet the colonists had been preparing for a zerg ground assault. The makeshift fortifications consisted of a mere steel fence and vehicles blocking the two entrances into the town. People were armed with civilian-grade small-arms and tools repurposed as close-combat weapons. Two days of preparation culminated in the expected attack which occurred during the space battle. The zerg easily broke through the fence and the colonists were forced to retreat into the center of the Free Haven. Mayor Jacob Nikolai excused himself from the front to contact Alpha Squadron for immediate assistance.
Octavia Bren manned the missile turret and manually aimed the missiles against ground targets. While all of the remaining missiles were expended immediate disaster had been averted. The detonation of the town's vespene gas storage tanks stemmed the zerg assault further and bought enough time for Alpha Squadron to respond. Battlecruisers disengaged from orbit to land ground troops; marines forced the zerg to retreat within hours with few casualties. The town was heavily damaged in the fighting and Alpha Squadron proceeded to fortify it with bunkers and new missile turrets.
Zerg Assault the TempleEdit
Lieutenant Scott, marines, and four goliaths deployed by dropship and infiltrated the artifact site. Their reconnaissance coincidentally coincided with a renewed zerg offensive on the artifact's protoss defenders. The rest of Alpha Squadron's ground force also went on the attack but were forced to retreat with heavy casualties. Terran infantry were separated from mechanized support and destroyed by reavers while Wraith support was turned back by the psionic storms from high templar. Scott managed to reach the artifact; they too took heavy casualties from protoss and zerg before being absorbed by the artifact.
Having run out of options, Duke ordered a nuclear strike on the artifact reasoning without it the protoss and zerg would have no reason to remain. MacGregor Golding, a ghost, was ordered to direct the strike. Three battlecruiser-launched warheads struck the mountain but all of the energy was absorbed by the artifact, which used it to release an energy creature. The strike was decisive but not in the manner Duke had intended. The released creature absorbed the protoss and zerg, effectively leaving the terrans in control of the planet, and headed to space. The surviving battlecruisers in orbit fired on the creature with Yamato Cannon; the creature absorbed the attacks and the ships.
The creature released and returned to physical form the terrans it had absorbed on the planet surface; they were deposited safely back on the planet surface.
- Mesta, Gabriel (July 1, 2001). StarCraft: Shadow of the Xel'Naga. Simon & Schuster (Pocket Star). ISBN 0-671-04149-5.