Monday, October 18, 2010

Goedelesherbach, Finale, (Part III)

L'Observateur is pleased to announce that our intrepid reporter has returned, essentially unharmed by his battlefield observations, somewhat soiled and smelling faintly of Madame Fifi's perfumes. Nevertheless, herewith the remainder of his report:

 Beside Esher village, the Campbell Highlanders faltered and fled from the combined action of Bollingers Chevaux-legere and Taittinger's Brigade of foot, allowing Bollinger's sabres to fall on the McDonalds Highlanders and make a meal of them* - then plunge on into the supporting Thuringer foot and drive them back in bloody ruin.

Icenian Highlanders going under a wall of grey coats

Martell's Arvergniards and the Colonian foot of Pontiac kept storming the village house by house, but it was a grim business, as Brigadier Dewars kept rallying his men and shifting positions within the village.

a combat acharne!
General Studebaker, distractedly trying to cover the ford and both sides of the river, sent half his men to try and corral the Brunschutz Horse before they completed their swim (to no avail, Schimmelpfennig led his men in a spirited gallop for the village of Goedel and, not coincidentally, the Arvergniard paychest). However, Watney saw this weakness at the ford, and personally led the Silurian fusiliers in a mad dash across the ford, braving the sweeping musketry of the Algonquin Continentals, then rudely dispatching them at the first cross of bayonets.

The Silurian Fusiliers storm the ford

With the sun reaching the zenith, Generale Taittinger finally took possession of the west end of Esher village

Taittinger's triumph

Meanwhile, as Martell and Pontiac gradually wrested control of the eastern village from Brigadier Dewars, the Butcher of Bakersfield, standing on the banks of the Bach, directed the gathering weight of his reinforcements to intrude across the river behind them - first a brigade of Thuringian Grenadiers, their caps jaunty with sunlight, then the Saxe-Gotha and Saxe-Coburg Guards in support, while Brigadier Walker, after a black look at his Prince, led the Icenian Guards across the river further upstream, to keep the Gens d'armes off the Thuringer flank.

The bitter melee over Esher, with the Thuringer intervention visible (top)

Over at the ford, with the Silurian Fusiliers deployed, the Icenian foot swarmed across, eager to get to grips with the rather shaken Colonian foot who turned to face them (nervously glancing over their shoulders at the cloud of dust showing the location of Schimmelpfennig's horse).

Watney's Brigade brushing aside the Colonial foot
 General Remy-Martin, leading the Gens d'armes Royaux, took a long look at the glittering bayonets of a whole brigade of Icenian foot (still trailing a few river weeds, admittedly), and decided that it was definitely time to retire to previously prepared positions, accompanied by a volley of jeers and Icenian cat-calls

Remy-Martin evincing that rarest of Arvergniard traits, caution
 With the Icenians pouring across his flank, M le Duc de Claret had little choice but to order his battered army to fall back to the west, hurriedly sending Bollinger's Chevaux leger to join the Gensdarmes and cover the retreat.

Bollinger hurrying to make a front against the flank attacks

Prinz Hedwig, thus left in control of the field, the shattered village of Esher, and - most importantly! - the viands and paychests of the Arvergniard host, ordered his men to camp on the field and hold a Te Deum in praise of the victory God Almighty delivered to his hands.

*I'm sorry, I simply couldn't resist

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