The 24th Irregulars, aka the Magpies, are a group of British privateers named for their love of precious materials and shiny things. They have an old fashioned letter of Marquee to the crown and raid on Her Majesty’s behalf around the Rim, striking enemies of the crown and taking their loot as fair reward. This puts them into conflict most with the various human bandits, like the Black Moon Union, as well as the Wun’Tux and Hirudin.
The 24th are a motley crew; motivations for joining differ greatly from person to person. The lion’s share of Magpies are retired Commonwealth servicepeople; forced out of the service by age but still full of vigour. They also accept people who have been ejected or forced to resign from the armed services and give them another chance. They are forgiving just the once; anyone caught abusing this second chance are seldom heard from again. Unlike your common mercenary, a Magpie has a sense of honour and allegiance to more than money. Their letter of Marquee guarantees such.
The group uses a mixed bag of military surplus; mostly British cast-offs. It’s most recognisable ship is painted the black and white of their namesake and features sweeping, bird-like wings to hammer the point home. These were once Type-34 Minelayers but have been re-purposed into warships capable of carrying externally racked fighters from raid to raid. These fighters are almost always reconditioned T-27s given a second lease of life under a new banner.