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On the March

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On the March

Post  Guest on Sat Aug 16, 2008 12:37 am

The central square was filling with red-coated soldiers rather than stalls. Companies formed behind their colours, some arriving more or less in proper order, others filling up gradually as soldiers from outlying billets found their places. The 62nd was on the southern side of the square, as they would take first place in the Second Division - not as of right, since that should fall to the 27th, the oldest of the three, nor as an honour, since the 2nd battalion of the 62nd had not earned any honours - yet. But the Rifle Companies under Captain Vickery and Lieutenant Sharpe had been attached to the 62nd and since their role was to act as scouts in front of the line of march, it made sense for the regiment to take the lead.

Edrington had been pleased to see his battalion form up smartly, and stood now, holding Bauernbrot's bridle, to congratulate Major Vereker. His men were indeed ready to march out, thanks to the Major's efforts here and back in England.

"Well done, Major - very creditable, especially in front of our General. Is all as well as it looks?"

"Almost, my lord. We're only four men down. Two possible runners, from Simmonds' company - no other information yet, the men aren't talking."

"They wouldn't. And?"

"One man fell down some steps and broke a leg. Wilton speaks well of him, so it may not be entirely his fault, and a stabbing - or possibly a bayoneting. The Provosts picked him up and are treating him as the victim of a robbery. He should be with us in a day or two, so... I did not wish to involve the Provosts."

"Quite right, Jamie. And the rest?"

Vereker smiled. "There are men who have drink taken, my lord. But none are incapable of marching, and they'll be back to normal by camp."

Edrington nodded. "Could you ask Captain Vickery and Mr Sharpe to join me?"

"Together or separately?"

"If you can find both of them, together. If not, whichever one you find. Thank you. As soon as they're ready we can tell the General so he can give the order."

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Re: On the March

Post  John Vickery on Sat Aug 16, 2008 6:41 am

Vickery had paraded his Company early in order to inspect them, as was only right considering they were marching this morning. Some of them had grown slack, despite all efforts made to the contrary by Vickery, his two lieutenants and the combined threats of the NCOs.

He was not surprised to see Cotton parading with the others, heedless of the fact he really should be looking after Vickery's baggage. He responded to Vickery's questioning with a guileless look and said he'd placed it under the care of the man looking after Mister Brady's stuff.

A soldier of the 62nd came up and saluted, startling Vickery slightly as he hadn't realised that the redcoats were forming up. "Colonel Edrington says could you report to him, please, sir?"

"Certainly. Cotton, would you hold Brandy for me?" The Rifleman stepped out of his file to take Brandy's bridle, and Vickery hurried over to the knot of 62nd's officers, where Edrington was waiting.

He saluted. "You sent for me, my lord."

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King George commands, and we obey
Over the hills and far away ~ Traditional

An officer must be confident in giving orders, or else the soldier will not be confident in executing them.
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John Vickery
Captain

Species : Captain; 5/60th Rifles
Number of posts : 2869
Location : Leading from the front
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Re: On the March

Post  Guest on Sat Aug 16, 2008 6:56 am

"Captain Vickery, thank you. I hope we shall be able to move off soon - when General Picton gives the word, of course. I'd like your Company to take its normal position ahead of the Division, once we're outside the city. We may not expect any enemy activity this close to Lisbon, but it will at least be a chance for us - the ordinary Infantry - to see how you work."

And there had been at least one French Hussar troop not that far from Lisbon, after all.

He studied the young Captain. "At this stage, I should like to see how you and Mr Sharpe's men co-operate, without any interference from me."

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Re: On the March

Post  John Vickery on Sat Aug 16, 2008 7:03 am

It seemed they were to be given some autonomy, at least. But best behaviour all round wouldn't go amiss, of course.

He nodded. "Certainly, sir." Scouting ahead shouldn't prove too taxing for men who had spent the whole winter, apart from training days, in Lisbon. It would ease them back into soldiering and give Vickery, his officers and NCOs a chance to catch the slapdash and unwary before they could slip up too far.

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Character by Sharpiefan | Banner by sans nom | Timeline | Wiki page



King George commands, and we obey
Over the hills and far away ~ Traditional

An officer must be confident in giving orders, or else the soldier will not be confident in executing them.
avatar
John Vickery
Captain

Species : Captain; 5/60th Rifles
Number of posts : 2869
Location : Leading from the front
Member since : 2008-08-03

View user profile http://showthecolours.forumakers.com/t1736-capt-the-hon-john-vic

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Re: On the March

Post  Guest on Sat Aug 16, 2008 7:12 am

"Good. It will be a useful exercise for all of us." Edrington nodded with satisfaction and then added: "What arrangements should we make for us to stay in touch - you will presumably be able to send a message to me very easily - I shall be with the regiment - but if I wished to communicate with you? Or is that not the way it is done?"

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Re: On the March

Post  John Vickery on Sat Aug 16, 2008 7:35 am

"We'll march in column, with scouts ahead and to each side to ensure the road is clear. Should you wish to send a message to me, my lord, the messenger will find me easily enough. I should be at the head of the Company, as you are at the head of your Regiment. Or one of my men will be able to point me out, or even bring your message to me."

_________________
Character by Sharpiefan | Banner by sans nom | Timeline | Wiki page



King George commands, and we obey
Over the hills and far away ~ Traditional

An officer must be confident in giving orders, or else the soldier will not be confident in executing them.
avatar
John Vickery
Captain

Species : Captain; 5/60th Rifles
Number of posts : 2869
Location : Leading from the front
Member since : 2008-08-03

View user profile http://showthecolours.forumakers.com/t1736-capt-the-hon-john-vic

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Re: On the March

Post  Guest on Sat Aug 16, 2008 8:10 am

"Good." He wondered if Sharpe would march sedately along in a column, or whether he would prefer to be part of one of the scouting parties. Probably the latter. He wondered where Sharpe was.

"Prepare to lead us out then. When the Staff decides we should move."

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Re: On the March

Post  John Vickery on Sat Aug 16, 2008 8:18 am

"Sir." Vickery saluted again, and, taking the Colonel's words as his dismissal, he returned to his men, to go over his final preparations with his senior Sergeant.

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Character by Sharpiefan | Banner by sans nom | Timeline | Wiki page



King George commands, and we obey
Over the hills and far away ~ Traditional

An officer must be confident in giving orders, or else the soldier will not be confident in executing them.
avatar
John Vickery
Captain

Species : Captain; 5/60th Rifles
Number of posts : 2869
Location : Leading from the front
Member since : 2008-08-03

View user profile http://showthecolours.forumakers.com/t1736-capt-the-hon-john-vic

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Re: On the March

Post  Richard Sharpe on Sat Aug 16, 2008 8:21 am

Late, because some idiot hadn't realised there were two lots of Riflemen attached to the 62nd. This wasn't going to go down well. So it'd be another chance to do his Sergeant act. Like he needed the practice.

"Sir, reportin' as ordered, sir," he said, presenting himself in front of Edrington as smartly as a soldier of sixteen years' experience could, with a precision salute to match."

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Character played by Sharpiefan. Icon by drbillbongo on LJ


O'er the hills and o'er the main
Through Flanders, Portugal and Spain
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Richard Sharpe
Captain

Species : 95th Rifles; Lieutenant
Number of posts : 2686
Location : First on the field and the last off it!
Member since : 2008-05-14

View user profile http://showthecolours.forumakers.com/characters-f4/lieutenant-ri

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Re: On the March

Post  Guest on Sat Aug 16, 2008 8:40 am

"Mr Sharpe." He studied the man. He had not forgotten Padstowe's words of warning - or advice. But the Sharpe who presented himself now was outwardly respectful, not burning with resentment and contempt. So correctly respectful, in fact, that it was clearly a mask. Two "sir"s were excessive. His lips twitched.

"Your men are ready to march, I hope?" He had not asked Vickery, but Vickery had been leading a company in the normal way. Sharpe's experience was - different.

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Re: On the March

Post  Richard Sharpe on Sat Aug 16, 2008 8:44 am

"Sir. Yes, sir." Sharpe was good at this game. Wellesley could see straight through it, of course, but he'd had years of experience and , what was more, knew Sharpe personally. Edrington was an unknown.

He wasn't going to push his limits, not till he had some idea of how the man would react. To do so beforehand would be foolish and maybe suicidal.

If Edrington wanted to think he was resentful, or angry, or anything else, behind the correct response, let him. Sharpe was merely going to have fun playing Sergeant.


Last edited by Richard Sharpe on Sat Aug 16, 2008 10:04 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : I have a crystal ball - I can tell the future! Apparently)

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Character played by Sharpiefan. Icon by drbillbongo on LJ


O'er the hills and o'er the main
Through Flanders, Portugal and Spain
avatar
Richard Sharpe
Captain

Species : 95th Rifles; Lieutenant
Number of posts : 2686
Location : First on the field and the last off it!
Member since : 2008-05-14

View user profile http://showthecolours.forumakers.com/characters-f4/lieutenant-ri

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Re: On the March

Post  Guest on Sat Aug 16, 2008 8:58 am

"I have spoken to Captain Vickery. Settle between you the arrangements for setting scouts." Edrington studied the man. "I am sure you do not need to be warned that this is not just an exercise. There has been French activity not far from Lisbon. So we must be prepared. And the Riflemen are our eyes and ears."

There would be a time to sort matters out with Sharpe, but this was not the time or place for any sort of confrontation. He stopped, waiting straight-faced for the expected "Sir, yes, Sir."

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Re: On the March

Post  Richard Sharpe on Sat Aug 16, 2008 9:03 am

"Sir. Certainly, sir."

He knew there were French patrols outside Lisbon. He still had a bruise behind his ear from the butt of a Frenchman's pistol, received not a hundred miles away from where they were standing. But maybe that's what all senior officers were taught to do on their first day in the rank: State the bloody bleeding obvious and do it often.

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Character played by Sharpiefan. Icon by drbillbongo on LJ


O'er the hills and o'er the main
Through Flanders, Portugal and Spain
avatar
Richard Sharpe
Captain

Species : 95th Rifles; Lieutenant
Number of posts : 2686
Location : First on the field and the last off it!
Member since : 2008-05-14

View user profile http://showthecolours.forumakers.com/characters-f4/lieutenant-ri

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Re: On the March

Post  Guest on Sat Aug 16, 2008 9:11 am

"Then carry on, Se - Mr Sharpe." Two could play at that game. Edrington wondered just how much Sharpe did know about the French cavalry. Padstowe had been unwilling to tell him anything, and - he could hardly have questioned Raoul about one of his own officers - even if only by attachment.

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Re: On the March

Post  Richard Sharpe on Sat Aug 16, 2008 9:16 am

"Sir!" Sharpe saluted, performed a precision right turn and marched back to his men. Edrington had been this close to calling him Sergeant. He'd never managed to catch Wellesley out, however well he did it.

This might even be fun.

He went to find Captain Vickery.


Last edited by Richard Sharpe on Sat Aug 16, 2008 10:00 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : I can tell the future. Apparently!)

_________________
Character played by Sharpiefan. Icon by drbillbongo on LJ


O'er the hills and o'er the main
Through Flanders, Portugal and Spain
avatar
Richard Sharpe
Captain

Species : 95th Rifles; Lieutenant
Number of posts : 2686
Location : First on the field and the last off it!
Member since : 2008-05-14

View user profile http://showthecolours.forumakers.com/characters-f4/lieutenant-ri

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Re: On the March

Post  Guest on Sat Aug 16, 2008 9:37 am

Harris wondered how long it would be before they moved. Once they got going things would be better - his head might ache less, for a start. They had been late - some mix up over the orders - but not catastrophically so. The lieutenant had been told to speak to the redcoat colonel. If the colonel wanted trouble no doubt Sharpe would be happy to oblige. He watched them - the lieutenant stiff and formal. He couldn't read the colonel - but there was no explosion, at least. He shifted his feet, watching the shadows on the church wall.

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Re: On the March

Post  John Vickery on Sat Aug 16, 2008 9:40 am

Vickery took Brandy's reins back from Cotton, dismissing the man back to his place on parade.

He was about to mount when he saw Lieutenant Sharpe approaching. "Mister Sharpe. Just the man."

Sharpe looked... puzzled? Curious? Expectant? A mixture of all of those and something Vickery couldn't put his finger on. "Sir?"

"'John' will be fine. I was hoping your men would cover the right flank for us, please."

There was a pause. Vickery hoped he hadn't made a mistake in deciding to treat Sharpe and his men as a Company in their own right. And he dearly wanted his own men to take point, but knew he had to make the sacrifice to win the older officer's favour. "And if you could detail three or four men to take point, it would be appreciated."

There was a smile. "Certainly - John. We would be pleased to." Sharpe looked slightly shy, but held his hand out.

Vickery shook it warmly. "I want us to be able to work together, not pulling separately. But your men are still your men. You are still responsible for them. But if any of the redcoats give you problems, please come to me." Somehow, he knew that Sharpe needed to hear that.

Sharpe nodded. "Thank you."


Last edited by John Vickery on Sat Aug 16, 2008 10:11 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Contradicted myself)

_________________
Character by Sharpiefan | Banner by sans nom | Timeline | Wiki page



King George commands, and we obey
Over the hills and far away ~ Traditional

An officer must be confident in giving orders, or else the soldier will not be confident in executing them.
avatar
John Vickery
Captain

Species : Captain; 5/60th Rifles
Number of posts : 2869
Location : Leading from the front
Member since : 2008-08-03

View user profile http://showthecolours.forumakers.com/t1736-capt-the-hon-john-vic

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Re: On the March

Post  Richard Sharpe on Sat Aug 16, 2008 9:46 am

Sharpe returned to his men. "Right. Sims, Parry, Gataker and Dodd, you're to take post on the right flank. I want to know if you hear a mouse squeak, got it?"

Nods, grins. Four men checked their rifles over.

"Harris, and Perkins, you're taking point. You're to scout ahead of the column and make sure the road's clear of Frogs. Yes, Perkins, even the ones that go 'ribbet'." The others grinned. Some even managed a chuckle. "We've got 60th on our left flank, so don't worry about that. We are here to impress Colonel Edrington, so let's show him what the 95th can do."

Sharpe wasn't usually one for rousing speeches, but he'd needed to say something.

_________________
Character played by Sharpiefan. Icon by drbillbongo on LJ


O'er the hills and o'er the main
Through Flanders, Portugal and Spain
avatar
Richard Sharpe
Captain

Species : 95th Rifles; Lieutenant
Number of posts : 2686
Location : First on the field and the last off it!
Member since : 2008-05-14

View user profile http://showthecolours.forumakers.com/characters-f4/lieutenant-ri

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Re: On the March

Post  Guest on Sat Aug 16, 2008 10:09 am

"We'll look good, don't worry. And if the Frogs come back, we can really impress him." Harris grinned at Perkins. "Looking forward to meeting them again, are you?"

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Re: On the March

Post  Ben Perkins on Sat Aug 16, 2008 10:16 am

Perkins smiled back at him and nodded. "I reckon they might not be so eager, though."

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Ben Perkins
Midshipman

Species : 95th Rifles
Number of posts : 379
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Re: On the March

Post  Richard Sharpe on Sat Aug 16, 2008 10:17 am

"All right, you can carry on talking on the march. Just don't distract the 60th lads. And make sure your rifles are loaded. Properly." Though Sharpe was fairly sure he didn't need to say that last bit.

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Character played by Sharpiefan. Icon by drbillbongo on LJ


O'er the hills and o'er the main
Through Flanders, Portugal and Spain
avatar
Richard Sharpe
Captain

Species : 95th Rifles; Lieutenant
Number of posts : 2686
Location : First on the field and the last off it!
Member since : 2008-05-14

View user profile http://showthecolours.forumakers.com/characters-f4/lieutenant-ri

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Re: On the March

Post  Ben Perkins on Sat Aug 16, 2008 10:27 am

"Yes sir," they replied, a bit more soberly.

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Ben Perkins
Midshipman

Species : 95th Rifles
Number of posts : 379
Location : following Sharpe
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Re: On the March

Post  Richard Sharpe on Sat Aug 16, 2008 10:30 am

"Right. Just you remember you're scouting for a bunch of redcoats who probably couldn't see a barn door ten yards in front of them."

_________________
Character played by Sharpiefan. Icon by drbillbongo on LJ


O'er the hills and o'er the main
Through Flanders, Portugal and Spain
avatar
Richard Sharpe
Captain

Species : 95th Rifles; Lieutenant
Number of posts : 2686
Location : First on the field and the last off it!
Member since : 2008-05-14

View user profile http://showthecolours.forumakers.com/characters-f4/lieutenant-ri

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Re: On the March

Post  Guest on Sat Aug 16, 2008 11:06 am

Sharpe had been a redcoat once, but had become a greenjacket and no longer thought much of them.

"We'll take care no one bothers them." The Staff were on the move, a messenger trotting across to the Colonel. Drums rolled. Men straightened up. It would take a long time to get this lot out of the square, company by company, but it looked as if it was about to start.

"Do we lead the parade, Mr Sharpe?" Harris asked, as a redcoat marched over towards them.

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Re: On the March

Post  Richard Sharpe on Sat Aug 16, 2008 11:12 am

"We certainly do. Straighten up, look smart and follow the road."

He took his own advice, moving to the front of the column. By rights, he should be riding Noix, but he really couldn't face hauling himself onto a horse and pretending he could ride when everyone around him could see plain as Nosey's nose that he couldn't. Noix would be coming along with the baggage, and he might try riding her later. Maybe not, though.

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Character played by Sharpiefan. Icon by drbillbongo on LJ


O'er the hills and o'er the main
Through Flanders, Portugal and Spain
avatar
Richard Sharpe
Captain

Species : 95th Rifles; Lieutenant
Number of posts : 2686
Location : First on the field and the last off it!
Member since : 2008-05-14

View user profile http://showthecolours.forumakers.com/characters-f4/lieutenant-ri

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