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7th July: Come along by horse

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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  John Vickery on Tue Jul 09, 2013 10:34 am

Vickery took the mug Pye offered him but was forestalled in tasting it by Torrington's reaction.

"Are you all right there, Captain?" he asked, lowering the cup again and with a look of concern on his tanned face.

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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.
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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: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  Zachary Pye on Tue Jul 09, 2013 4:51 pm

Pye looked up at Torrington too. The expression on his face was that of concern and worry that he might have done something wrong. It was tea, just as Torrington had wanted, so maybe it was still a bit hot. He straightened a little bit nervously. "S' anything else you need me fer.. sirs?"

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'Green is the best colour for light troops and if put on in the spring, by autumn it nearly fades with the leaves.' J. G. Simcoe
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Zachary Pye
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Species : British Riflemen; 5/60th Rifles
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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  Edward Torrington on Tue Jul 09, 2013 8:39 pm

Torrington just stopped himself from commenting scathingly on whether Peggie had roosted in the tea as well and pulled himself together. Most likely, Pye had only given him the tea all the soldiers drank here.

Putting the mug carefully down on the table, he schooled his features into polite blantness and said as lightly as he could:

"Yes, thank you. It was just ... not quite what I expected. That would be all, Pye, thank you."

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Edward Torrington
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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  John Vickery on Wed Jul 10, 2013 2:56 am

"By which you mean, it's smouch," Vickery said with a grin. "Thanks for the warning." He raised the cup in a quiet salute before tasting the tea it held.

"As I thought. Adding a bit of sugar may render it a little more palatable," he said, giving the Engineer an amused look.

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

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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  Edward Torrington on Wed Jul 10, 2013 5:25 am

"Smouch ..."

Edward savoured the word while digging out his very elegant, silver, but sadly no longer even half full sugar pot.

"Whoever named it seems to have found rather melliflous. Here, please help yourself. I think I prefer to taste it in all its acerbic splendour. At least it really gives you a lasting impression of having drunken ... smouch."

_________________

Story !  God bless you !  I have none to tell, Sir.
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Edward Torrington
Commander

Species : Royal Engineer Captain
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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  Zachary Pye on Wed Jul 10, 2013 7:58 am

"m' sorry sirs..." Pye looked terribly apologetic. Of course when he had taken what he could name tea and used it, he had not thought it would make such a difference. "S' only Freddie what has permission to get in ter get t' proper tea..." He bit his lip. "I'll get Freddie and he'll make yer both a proper one."

He took a step back to turn and do as he had promised. Right now he would much rather have tried cleaning the horses than seeing the two officers with the offensive brew!

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'Green is the best colour for light troops and if put on in the spring, by autumn it nearly fades with the leaves.' J. G. Simcoe
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Zachary Pye
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Species : British Riflemen; 5/60th Rifles
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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  John Vickery on Wed Jul 10, 2013 8:08 am

Vickery helped himself to a bare half-teaspoon of sugar and gave Pye a reassuring look. "I've had smouch before - it tastes rather strong but it is definitely tea. And while it is an acquired taste, it is nevertheless drinkable. Although, it seems Pye is willing to make a second brew from your own stock, if you would prefer it."

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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: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  Edward Torrington on Wed Jul 10, 2013 9:59 am

Determined, Edward swallowed another bit of the brew. He just hoped his acting skills were good enough to project ... well, something like graceful acceptance of the brew. After all, he should have thought of that and pointed out his own tea jar if he wanted something special, he supposed.

"No need to apologize, Pye - I was only surprised."

He tipped his cup to Vickery.

"I am quite content. Unless you prefer something different, Vickery?"

Inwardly, he kicked himself. What was he doing? He definitely prefered something different! Furthermore, he could get it with just a few words. He was entitled to it! So why was he trying to spare the feelings of a common soldier over a cup of badly brewed tea?

_________________

Story !  God bless you !  I have none to tell, Sir.
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Edward Torrington
Commander

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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  Zachary Pye on Wed Jul 10, 2013 5:01 pm

Pye 's eyes brightened. "A'right, sirs!" It had not been so bad, and even Torrington seemed to accept it, though he was much less used to this type of brew. "I'll...fetch Freddie now. He'll know if yer need anythin' else." He said, his smile rather radiant.

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'Green is the best colour for light troops and if put on in the spring, by autumn it nearly fades with the leaves.' J. G. Simcoe
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Zachary Pye
Captain

Species : British Riflemen; 5/60th Rifles
Number of posts : 2694
Location : Waiting for dinner
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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  John Vickery on Thu Jul 11, 2013 4:28 am

"Oh, I'm fine - but I daresay that I am much more used to it than you are, Torrington. If you prefer a fresh cup from your own stock, please do not let me stop you." The words were accompanied by a smile and a quick lift of the eyebrow.

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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: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  Edward Torrington on Sat Jul 13, 2013 8:51 am

Edward eyed the brew doubtfully.

"I'm not sure whether I should answer that it might be better if I get used to it under controlled conditions, or that I hope that I will never really have to, so ... Let's drink it before it cools off and make the next cup a better one."

He turned the map so that Vickery could properly see it and settled down to business.

"Here, that's where we were ... They came from that direction. If there had been any larger force in this area ...", he pointed, "... We would have seen them, but we could not see anything that way, and didn't exactly go back to look afterwards."

He tapped the map with his compasses.

"They didn't look as if they were too far away from their main force - more a patrol or a small reconnoitring force."

_________________

Story !  God bless you !  I have none to tell, Sir.
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Edward Torrington
Commander

Species : Royal Engineer Captain
Number of posts : 1854
Location : Surveying
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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  John Vickery on Sat Jul 13, 2013 9:35 am

Vickery put his own cup aside so that he could study the map without risking spilling tea on it.

"They don't stray too far from their main force if they can help it," he mused in agreement. "Senhora Lopez da Almeida and her compatriots see to that, after all. From the look of things, it would seem that we are far closer to them than we had thought. I shall have to let my men know, so that they can be alert for trouble, should the French decide to do anything further."

Although hopefully the French had been equally rattled, and would not try anything soon.

_________________
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: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  Edward Torrington on Sat Jul 13, 2013 9:40 am

"Do we ... need to inform Senhora Lopez and her friends as well?"

Edward thoughtfully circled a small village on the map.

_________________

Story !  God bless you !  I have none to tell, Sir.
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Edward Torrington
Commander

Species : Royal Engineer Captain
Number of posts : 1854
Location : Surveying
Member since : 2011-08-22

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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  John Vickery on Sat Jul 13, 2013 10:28 am

"They are probably more aware of French movements than we are," Vickery said, looking at the village Torrington had just circled. "Still, I do not suppose informing them could hurt - and it would be only polite, even if they do know already."

_________________
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: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  Edward Torrington on Sun Jul 14, 2013 9:00 am

Edward measured a few things with his compasses, more following his thoughts with the instrument than really gathering useful data.

"Here ... unless they are not there at all or want to go a very long way, I think that is the only route on which the French can move anything heavier than their light troops in our direction. A few men with shovels and axes can probably make that uncomfortable enough ..."

From an engineering point of view it was rather simple, but he was uncertain whether his idea was in any way practical or even wanted.

_________________

Story !  God bless you !  I have none to tell, Sir.
avatar
Edward Torrington
Commander

Species : Royal Engineer Captain
Number of posts : 1854
Location : Surveying
Member since : 2011-08-22

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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  John Vickery on Sun Jul 14, 2013 9:45 am

Vickery has taken another sip of the strong tea in his cup, and nodded as he listened to the Engineer's ideas.

"Indeed," he said, looking at the map and considering the terrain shown. "I would venture to add that even a few men in the surrounding hills could add to the discomfort. From what I recall, the hills at that point are fairly steep, with scattered boulders and numerous gorse bushes and scrubby trees - all admirable for either cover or road-blocking purposes. Or both."


_________________
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: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  Edward Torrington on Sun Jul 14, 2013 8:02 pm

The engineer nodded, his recollection of the terrain matching Vickery's description.

"I would think so. It should be good sharp shooter territory as well, shouldn't it? There appear to be several spots from where a good man with a rifle ought to be able to control a decent amount of ground without being easily approachable himself."

Putting his compasses aside in favour of a pen, Edward pointed to a few spots on the map where the hatching was so dense it almost appeared as a thick black line, indicating a bluff.

"A rifle bullet would cover that distance, wouldn't it? While a musket, uphill ..."

He quirked an eyebrow at Vickery.

_________________

Story !  God bless you !  I have none to tell, Sir.
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Edward Torrington
Commander

Species : Royal Engineer Captain
Number of posts : 1854
Location : Surveying
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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  John Vickery on Sun Jul 14, 2013 11:22 pm

"That's what, fifty yards? A hundred at the most, although I cannot tell how high that bluff is." He gave Torrington the sort of smile more commonly seen on a shark. "I would think even a recruit would find it hard to miss from there - and if the terrain offers as much cover as these hills generally do, troops armed with muskets would find it extremely difficult to dislodge the sharpshooters. After all, it has been proven that it is easier to hold high ground, than to take it."

He took his own pencil out "I would think, hiding men here... and here, would cause quite a bit of disruption. Especially with the turn in the road there, around that spur. Riflemen on this side would only have to move quite a short distance in order to cover quite a bit of the road."

_________________
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: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  Edward Torrington on Mon Jul 15, 2013 4:27 am

Edward searched through his notes until he found a sketch done in the new style where the heights were marked off with isopleths - contour lines at certain heights.

"About twenty feet ... "

His eyes gleamed merrily in response to Vickery's smile. Lightly, he asked:

"Would you care to give some recruits a little bit of target practice? I still have a bit of work to do that way, and the next time I have to run, I wouldn't mind at all if it was rather towards something than away."

_________________

Story !  God bless you !  I have none to tell, Sir.
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Edward Torrington
Commander

Species : Royal Engineer Captain
Number of posts : 1854
Location : Surveying
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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  John Vickery on Mon Jul 15, 2013 5:08 am

"Of course. I will send Cotton as well - after all, they may need an example to follow. Half the company should easily suffice." And that half company could be split into two, one half under Lieutenant Delacroix, with Vickery himself taking the other - which would also ensure he was there should he be needed.

It would also mean that he could observe his men in action, something he was aware that he had not been able to do with the younger lads so much because of having to think of the bigger picture. It would give those younger lads a taste of action without the associated risks of fighting on the level or at close quarters, although it seemed that Pye and Rottlaender had both acquitted themselves well in the skirmish earlier.

"Is there anything else I can do to be of service?" he asked, tucking his pencil away again.

_________________
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

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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  Edward Torrington on Mon Jul 15, 2013 5:51 am

"Bear me company for dinner later? Somehow it feels rather anticlimatic to sit down to dinner alone after being shot at. Or have I just disqualified myself as lily-livered amateur among all these battle-hardened veterans again?"

_________________

Story !  God bless you !  I have none to tell, Sir.
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Edward Torrington
Commander

Species : Royal Engineer Captain
Number of posts : 1854
Location : Surveying
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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  John Vickery on Mon Jul 15, 2013 6:36 am

Vickery grinned, a proper grin this time. "Oh, being shot at is merely the entrance fee into the club of the professional soldier... and far be it from me to refuse to dine with a member of that particular club." He raised his tin mug in a salute to the Engineer before blowing the steam off his tea and taking a sip.

"You know, just because I've had smouch before doesn't mean I actually like it," he said a moment later. "If it's not too much bother, I think I'll request a proper cup of tea from proper stocks, once I've finished this - I wouldn't want to hurt Pye's feelings by not drinking this."

_________________
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: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  Edward Torrington on Mon Jul 15, 2013 7:00 am

Edward couldn't help but smile at this and raise his cup in an answering salute.

"Glad to hear that. Even with his usual spoiling of my horses, Rottlaender should be finished by now ..."

He put his head out of the tent and looked around, trying to locate either his servant or somebody he could send after him.

_________________

Story !  God bless you !  I have none to tell, Sir.
avatar
Edward Torrington
Commander

Species : Royal Engineer Captain
Number of posts : 1854
Location : Surveying
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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  Zachary Pye on Mon Jul 15, 2013 7:05 am

Again, almost as before, there they were. As if on cue, the pair of greencoats, grasshoppers and young lads that were all too often up to no good, but yet trying so much to please that it was hard to remain angry with them for too long. Pye was explaining to Freddie about how he had made them tea with his leaves and that he was really needed now, because Torrington did not look like he liked it too much and he really, really needed more tea, but that he could not have just gone and taken it from the tent! In addition to that, he had not known where it was anyway!

_________________


'Green is the best colour for light troops and if put on in the spring, by autumn it nearly fades with the leaves.' J. G. Simcoe
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Zachary Pye
Captain

Species : British Riflemen; 5/60th Rifles
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Re: 7th July: Come along by horse

Post  Edward Torrington on Mon Jul 15, 2013 7:38 am

"Rottlaender. Pye. Captain Vickery will join me for dinner, and will you please bring us another round of tea?"

Edward retreated back into the tent and sat down again.

"Fresh tea should be here momentarily. So ... when would you want to stage that surprise?"

----------

Freddie had already used the way from the horses to the tent to talk himself into a minor panic, and now nearly jumped with nerves.

"Oh Gott! I must ... Zach, you help me, please? I need to make tea, and food, and make up the table, and ... oh Gott! The captain still has his staubige clothes on! He hates unclean clothes!"

_________________

Story !  God bless you !  I have none to tell, Sir.
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Edward Torrington
Commander

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