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6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

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6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Marashar on Sun Jun 30, 2013 8:59 am

Two shots rang out in the hot afternoon air.

If any piquet had been sleeping, he would be awake now, so closeby had they been, but whoever had fired was hidden by wild olive trees and high grass. A few seconds later a week cry for help, repeated over and over in Portugues, English and Spanish, followed.
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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Guest on Tue Jul 02, 2013 6:45 am

Picket duty was perhaps one of the most boring duties in the army. And, Rhys had learned, that was saying something. Despite that, it could be quite unnerving at times, but was, almost, always important.

Being an officer however meant that he didn't have to do it. Not directly anyways. Those were still his men out there though, and thus, his responsibility. Rhys checked the time. It was high noon. Time for him to check on the Pickets.

Scarcely had the Welsh Captain gotten in sight of the Picket, who was standing next to a tree, when two shots rang out. Now Rhys began running to the man, who had now began to crouch, his weapon ready. "Private! What is it?" Rhys whispered.

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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Zachary Pye on Tue Jul 02, 2013 7:29 pm

"Officer!" Pye nudged Freddie pointing at Argall. The officer was not however the person who had just shot twice, nor the one crying out for help. Pye glanced at the man Argall was talking to. The report was quick and to the point of course. Two shots, very close, and nobody knew who they came from just yet.

The voices were now heard by all in the picket line. "Think he'll order us to investigate?" Pye whispered, looking hopeful. "Don't think there's an army there...but if it is, they've gotten darn too close!" He glanced at Argall again, curious.

Just as he did so however he caught movement in the corner of his eyes. He jerked around to see better and then called. "A man running, sir!"

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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Marashar on Tue Jul 02, 2013 8:20 pm

The man who gave the report to Argall recounted what he had seen (nothing) and what he had heard (two shots, pistol, he thought, then a weak cry) to the officer, then volunteered:

"No muzzle fire, Sir. Don't think it was aimed at us. Too long a distance ..."

Before he could finish, from down the line where the Rifles' were stationed, Pye's shout rang out.
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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Allhands on Fri Jul 05, 2013 6:23 pm

Agostinho was lying on the ground, with very little to his person. He was bleeding and pale, his hand weakly clutching over the wound. His breaths had been tired and shallow.

He chewed at his lip, fighting another wave of pain. "Socorro!..." He called weakly. "Help.. inglês!" He could only hope that they would hear him, care to hear him and care to come. He was in a bad state, weakened and without help he could as well expect to die.
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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Zachary Pye on Sun Jan 19, 2014 9:12 pm

Pye glanced up. Were they going to see what it was, or stay here? The man had been running away yes, but it had looked as though he had abandoned something on the ground. Something that was now making noise.

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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Edward Torrington on Mon Jan 20, 2014 10:54 am

"Hello, what's this?"

Captain Torrington came cantering down the line of piquets - he had heard the faint report of a shot, and then recognized Pye's voice calling something. Since nobody seemed to be actively engaged with an enemy at the moment, but all looking pretty tensely to a couple of bushes, he turned directly to Pye, who was closer to him than the guards captain who had come from the other side.

"Pye, what happened? Who shot?"

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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Zachary Pye on Mon Jan 20, 2014 8:44 pm

"None of us, sir. We heard the shots." Pye answered indicating the direction where the shot must have come from. "There was a man, I think, that ran from about the same area." He added.

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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Edward Torrington on Tue Jan 21, 2014 12:39 am

"Shot and ran? ... Anyone hurt?"

The engineer took out his spyglass, trying to see whether it had been a single man or a distraction for something else.


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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Zachary Pye on Tue Jan 21, 2014 12:57 am

"No, sir. No reports of one anyway." Pye answered quickly. "...Don't know what they were firing at. but .." He shrugged. The officer had not asked for his opinion, merely a report. He looked ahead.

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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Allhands on Tue Jan 21, 2014 1:00 am

The wounded man cried for help again. His voice had weakened, though his desperation at being here and yet perhaps end up undiscovered, fueled him on. He did not move by much since he had been abandoned there. Perhaps he would be able to live, perhaps this was his end, but he hoped that he could deliver the message on, or else he would not be the only one gone.
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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Edward Torrington on Tue Jan 21, 2014 1:16 am

Exasperated, Torrington pushed his glass close again.

"Pye, it is grossly impolite to say but, ... in that suggestive manner and then not finish the sentence. If you know something more or can make a reasonable assumption, spit it out!"

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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Zachary Pye on Tue Jan 21, 2014 1:24 am

"Sorry, sir!" Pye snapped, nearly going up as straight as a board, before realising that it would not have been really useful to do that.

"...didn't think they were firing at anyone.. 'zactly.. Sir. Just air. Like shooting ducks...only there ain't no ducks here.. sir." He said quickly and sharply. "An' they left someone there...I think. Hearin' him moanin' sir!"

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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Edward Torrington on Tue Jan 21, 2014 1:39 am

"Moaning?"

Torrington looked really angry now, mostly because somebody was probably dying there, and everybody was standing around.

"Captain, if you would please stay here and keep the line! Rifles, give me cover!"

Somewhere in the back of his mind, he feared that this was all a trap, and he was not so sanguin about going out there as he tried to appear, but he felt that somebody needed to do something. And while breaking the piquet line might be exactly what this trap was about, a randomly appearing officer would hopefully not figure into their plans.

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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Zachary Pye on Tue Jan 21, 2014 2:11 am

The officer made no protest, probably not thinking much of the event that had just transpired. Whatever his reasons, he seemed less than eager to be the one to step forward and quite much more eager to let this man do the work.

Pye gripped his rifle. He was going to make quite sure that there was no one, that endangered this officer, the man from the engineers. He was his friend's officer and thus needed to live long so that Freddie could remain a batman for just as long.

Well, and he had grown to like Torrington too, feeding his Peggie and when not in his mean spirits, - such as right now - being quite a pleasant officer as well. He heard the moan again, weaker. Whoever it was needed help fast. Was it one of theirs? A Frenchman perhaps?

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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Edward Torrington on Tue Jan 21, 2014 11:10 pm

Nodding towards the soldiers to be on guard now, Torrrington guided his horse over the dry ditch they had chosen as their camp line. Leaning low over Truneo's neck, he carefully approached the copse Pye had indicated. Although he was still very cautious, he saw no harm in calling out:

"Is anyone there? Comment allez-vous ? ¿Necesita ayuda?"

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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Allhands on Tue Jan 21, 2014 11:27 pm

Someone was coming! Agostinho could cry from joy, if his body was not hurting so much. Though the second part had his heart skip a beat. This man was not French, was he?

The last had him breathe more easily again and he answered in a louder. "Ayuda, si!" He tried to move a little. "Ayudeme por favor." He could speak enough Spanish and certainly more than he could speak English.

He inquired whether the stranger was English and tried to turn slowly and see past the horse. His eyes grew a little wider at seeing the blue uniform. He must have been a Frenchman after all though the men had said they would deliver him to the right side!
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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Edward Torrington on Wed Jan 22, 2014 3:28 am

Torrington frowned, then finally could see a figure in the undergrowth. Only moments later the dark colours resolved themselves into a rough bandage and a bloodstained waistcoat, and the engineer turned in the saddle and shouted:

"Get a surgeon! Segeant, we need this area searched - carefully."

Unless the wounded man was hiding a pistol very uncomfortably under his body, he could not have fired the shots himself.

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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Zachary Pye on Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:38 am

The riflemen were given orders to explore the surroundings, while one of the swifter footed ones was sent to find a surgeon and bring him to the picquet line. Only a few were sent out to explore really.

Still, as much as they would have searched the man was alone and unarmed. After a short while one of the riflemen was sent to Torrington to report on their findings, which were rather meager. Yes, there were more prints found on one or two occasions, but they were leading away and they could not catch up with whoever made them.

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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Edward Torrington on Wed Jan 22, 2014 10:20 am

While the riflemen were searching, Torrington dismounted and knelt down next to the man, uncapping his water bottle.

"Here ... try to drink a bit. Can you understand me?"

He spoke slowly and clearly, holding the bottle up so that the man could see it.

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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Allhands on Wed Jan 22, 2014 9:33 pm

The man watched Torrington suspiciously, though he saw him speak no more French and the uniform was a little different to that most common one of the French. They had perhaps delivered him to the correct side after all. All would have been lost, had they not.

He opened his mouth carefully to drink and not to spill or allow the water to go where it would cause him to cough. He was not keen on straining those muscles which would cause further pain to his body.

He blinked at Torrington, shook his head uncertainly and then introduced himself. "Agostinho.." The remaining name was quite long and clearly Portuguese.
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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Edward Torrington on Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:55 pm

"Captain Torrington, Royal Engineers, at your service."

Torrington bowed from the waist. Seeing that English seemed not o get him answers, he tried Italian next. Being resaonably fluent, he had understood the Spaniards well enough if they had spoken slowly, and he hoped that this would work here as well.

"You are near a British camp. A surgeon is coming."

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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Allhands on Thu Jan 23, 2014 12:46 am

Torrington. That was a name he remembered. It was the Lord that Estefania recalled and to which he was to deliver the letter! He had doubted sincerely that he might meet this man before his end or that he would be able to deliver the letter to him. But he could thank Him, for how else would this engineer had appeared here if not for His intervention.

He sighed with some relief and winced. "Lord Torrington?" He asked just to make sure, as it was not impossible for the English to have a person of the same surname. There were many Smiths, he was told though he was glad to stay away from their camp altogether if possible.
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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Edward Torrington on Thu Jan 23, 2014 9:10 am

Surprised, the engineer nodded.

"Yes, I'm Lord Torrington. Do I know you?"

He did not think so, but he had talked to many people in the last few weeks, and the man did look much paler and scruffier than his skin colour and clothing suggested as normal. That his features were distorted by pain didn't help either.

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Re: 6th August 1809, afternoon: Ransom

Post  Allhands on Thu Jan 23, 2014 9:29 am

"Lopez da Almeida...." He tried to search somewhere in his waistcoat then relaxed his bloodied hand and sighed. "Left side...letter." He said those words slowly, hoping that the man would understand and know where to look himself. Movement was beginning to tire him more now.
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